During a recent Sunday School class,* we were studying 2
Peter 3:8-12:

“But do not forget this one thing, dear friends; with the
Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years is like a day. The
Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is
patient with you, not wanting any to perish, but everyone to come to
repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will
disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and
everything in it will be laid bare. Since everything will be destroyed in this
way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly
lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming.”

I want to focus on two elements that this passage seems to
be indicating. First of all, since Peter is writing this letter to Christians,
he indicated that God is patient with Christians, as well as
non-Christians, when it comes to fulfilling His promised return.

Secondly, since God’s desire is that no one should perish
but all come to repentance, what does this patience entail? Somehow, the way we
live our lives as Christians is vital to reaching the lost and, therefore,
hastening our Lord’s return.

Later in the passage, Peter asks the question, “What kind of
people ought you to be?” The answer given is we are to live holy and godly


*Written November 1995.

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