Therefore, beloved, looking forward to these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless; and consider that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation—as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given to him, has written to you. (2 Peter 3:14-15)
Staying The Course With Determined Faith
The apostle Peter had lived an incredible life. Nothing would have prepared him for how much the man from Nazareth would change his life. As he grew older, Peter realized the great vision of what was to come and exhorted his readers to embrace the promise of eternal life affirmed by the love of God. There was a great change that took place from the Peter introduced to in the gospels and the apostle writing his final letters. His final words would be for the people of God to grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ and to stay the course with such a determined faith that they could live with purposeful hope. Peter looked forward to seeing his Lord again. The heart of the fisherman was clearly set on the coming of the Lord and the new heavens and new earth in which righteousness dwells. There were many who discouraged the hearts of the people by mocking the coming day of the Lord but Peter lived with a firm belief in the promised coming of Christ. He wanted others to look forward to that day not knowing that two thousand years would pass and the day of the Lord has yet to come. His message is vital throughout all ages and generations. What separates the New Testament disciples from so many today is they lived with the earnest belief that Jesus really was coming back in their lifetime. Because two millennia have passed, few recognize the possibility of the Lord’s return at any moment. Peter exhorts to live in a manner looking forward to the coming of the Lord and making every effort to be found in peace and prepared.
Looking for the unseen takes a determined faith. It requires a diligent faith to be found by Christ as ready, prepared, anxious, excited and living in such a manner the day of the Lord will not be a surprise. No one knows the day of the Lord but for the faithful it does not matter. The disciples of the Lord are living without the spot of sin and worldliness. Their hearts are blameless before God as they strive to mold their character into the image of the Son of God. If the Lord comes today, tomorrow or next week the child of God is ready. Even if the Lord does not come in the lifetime of a child of God they are still ready and death is only a passing from one life of glory to an eternal glory. Looking forward to the coming of the Lord and living with the hope the Lord will come at any minute will change the outlook and “uplook” of the soul to be found blameless. Faithful children of God have nothing to worry about. The Father in heaven knows when He will bring the world to an end and bring all His children home to be with Him.
If there is any man in scripture that understands the longsuffering of the Lord, Peter would be that man. The gospels reveal a character that is filled with impetuous, impulsive and rash statements and decisions on Peter’s part. He had moments of clarity but often would have to be rebuked by the Lord. After the death of Jesus Peter still struggled with his faith and prejudices against the Gentiles. The two epistles of Peter reveal the character of a man who has changed over time to become a deeply devoted and committed servant of the Lord. Longsuffering is an appeal to the nature of God to allow the soul of man to mature to understand the purpose of the divine will. The longsuffering of God is salvation because He allows time to pass to let the child of God grow in the grace and knowledge of His Son. Peter understood more than most men the salvation of the longsuffering of the Lord and was so thankful for it. All men stand in the shadow of God’s grace to see how the patience of the Lord is an opportunity to change lives. These times should not be squandered or wasted. The longsuffering of the Lord is salvation for today with no promise of tomorrow. Staying the course with a determined faith in the promises of God will shape the heart of man to look forward to the coming of the Lord with hope and assurance in the eternal life in His Son.