God’s Patience and Promises

          In his second epistle, the apostle Peter found it necessary to correct a false view espoused by antinomian philosophy. “Antinomians believe that since salvation was by grace alone, the requirements of the moral law were irrelevant.”* The problem with that view should be obvious: grace does not erase the moral standards set out in Scripture. Grace does not give us license to sin, and has provided us with all the power of Heaven to stand against sin, but it also provides forgiveness when we do sin. It was tough for these new, first century believers to cling to their faith walk in the face of strong persecution and damaging false philosophies. Peter had to help them understand and encourage them to hold on as they questioned why it was taking Christ so long to return and end all the misery in which they found themselves. Peter told them:

  •  “…scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? …But the heavens and the earth which are now preserved by the same word, are reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.
  • But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
  • But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night… Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God…
  • Therefore, beloved, looking forward to these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless; and account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation…”  Second Peter 3:3-15 (NKJ).

          As it was then, so it is now. People who question our faith and mock our God will attempt to cast doubt by pointing out that Christ still has not returned. His patience and longing for the souls of even those who are mocking are the very reasons why He’s waiting. We want to see things changed right now. We want Him to return right now. But what about those people who need a little more time? What about those who are just about to see the light?

           God’s patience is not eradicating His promise. God’s patience is merely telling His promise to wait a bit longer for the salvation of as many as possible. He is going to return and all His promises will indeed happen. May we learn to rest in God’s patience as we wait not only for His return, but also for all His promises to manifest in our lives.

 * Note from the Key Word Study Bible, introduction to The Second Epistle of Peter, AMG Publishers.

________________________

©2011 Sharon Norris Elliott. Feel free to forward this devotion in its entirety, including this copyright line. Leave comments, ask questions, read past devotions, or subscribe to receive these devotions daily in your e-mail at www.sanewriter.wordpress.com. Also, periodically check in at www.LifeThatMatters.net to see what’s going on in the ministry.

 And pick up a copy of Sharon’s new book, Power Suit: The Armor of God Fit for the Feminine Frame, available at Christian bookstores, online, from New Hope Publishers, and from the Life That Matters Ministries’ website.

~ by sanewriter on December 4, 2011.

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