Suggested reading: 2 Peter chapter 3 verses 1-14.
During three of our previous meditations, we looked forward to the time when Christ will return to reign on earth for one thousand years, which will usher in a time of peace and prosperity. Nevertheless, Peter, the apostle, warned, ‘Scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts’, 2 Peter chapter 3 verse 3. These men will mock, saying, ‘Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation’, 2 Peter chapter 3 verse 4. Far from teaching truth, they display willful ignorance of God’s word.
Firstly, they are ignorant of what happened to ‘the world that then existed’, i.e. the world before the flood in the days of Noah, verses 5 & 6. Mankind assumed that things would continue as they were then but they were wrong! Far from continuing, it overflowed with water and perished.
Secondly, they are ignorant of the destiny of ‘the heavens and the earth, which are now’, verse 7. They are ‘reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men’, verse 7. Peter uses graphic language to describe the end of the present heavens and earth, e.g. ‘great noise’; ‘fervent heat’; ‘burned up’; ‘dissolved’!
Thirdly, they are ignorant of how God views time. He is eternal and not limited by time, verse 8. What appears to be a delay in His plans, is not so, when viewed in the light of eternity.
Fourthly, they are ignorant of God’s character. What seems to be slackness on His part, reveals His patience. He is not willing that anyone should perish, verse 9.
God’s judgment will ultimately fall on this godless world and ‘the elements will melt with fervent heat’, verse 10; however, we look for the time, when there will be ‘new heavens and a new earth’, verses 12 & 13.