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February 2023

Eschatological Ethics

Eschatos is the Greek word for “end.” So, eschatology is “the study of end/last things.” As Peter ends his reminder to Christians to be grounded and growing in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior, he urges us to remember the end towards which God is bringing all things. Jesus will return and bring about the fulfillment of all God’s promises. In the meantime, we must wait. So Peter exhorts us to wait well teaching us that waiting well for the One to come means working well in the world that is.

Patient to the End

When life is going well, we perceive time as sweet and God as good.  But when life is hard, time becomes bitter and we question both the character and concern of God.  The good news is that this experience of life has been a challenge faced by every generation of Christians.  Thus Peter wrote to the believers of his day to encourage them as they faced suffering and false teaching to remember what they knew to be true.  God’s patience is proof of his compassion for sinners, not his apathy towards sin.

Fallacies and Failures

In a perfect world we would be able to trust everyone with the proper credentials and positions of authority. Unfortunately, because humans are sinful we are all prone to deceiving and being deceived. This is true, even in the church. One of Peter’s chief concerns in his second letter is the presence of false prophets among the people. So, he writes to warn us to not be deceived and drawn into their destruction.

January 2023

The Gospel of God’s Love

It is shocking how easy the very things we put into place to remind us of commitments we have made fade into the rhythms and routines of our lives. Verses written on notes, gospel tracts carried in wallets, and alarms to remind us to pray get passed over because of our familiarity with them. This can happen just as easily in our churches with foundational truths of Christianity, even the gospel. It is a foundation we lay and truth that we assume until someone or something stops us and draws us back to its beauty. John 3:16 is a familiar verse that packs a tremendous gospel blessing when we stop and consider it.

Corroborating Witnesses

Without the proper motivation, it is easy to grow lax in any area of our lives. We put off studying for the test, we cut corners, or we just quit altogether. Peter wants us to know that we have the greatest motivation in the universe to make every effort to grow in grace and godliness: Christ’s immanent return. Despite what false teachers may proclaim, we can be confident in Christ’s second coming and this gives us hope in the darkness and reason to pursue him in all that we do.

Essential Christian Qualities

We may not be people who believe that the grace of God is a license to sin but we might easily slip into the belief that the grace of God grants us a free ride.  After all, if Jesus has done everything for me why do I need to do anything at all?  Peter knows that spiritual laziness is a pathway to licentiousness.  So, Peter continues with his encouraging message by challenging us to make every effort to grow up in Christ because we have been empowered, transformed, and freed by his grace.  He reminds us that we must cultivate our character and confirm our calling in Christ.

Life AND Godliness

We all struggle with feelings of inadequacy. We can feel this way when life becomes overwhelming. We can feel this way when we compare ourselves to others. We can feel this way when we think about all that God desires from us. But in the opening verses of his second letter, Peter wants to ground us in the truth of God’s grace.  So, he emphasizes how God always equips us for what he expects from us.  Therefore, we can look beyond ourselves and the overwhelming circumstances of our lives and look to Christ to has given us all that we need for life AND godliness.

December 2022

King of kings

In the same way that we do not like to be judged by imperfect individuals, we do not like to be ruled by them either. Nevertheless, Jesus Christ is the King of kings and Lord of lords who will one day come, defeat his enemies, and establish his perfect reign over all creation. On that day will either stand with Jesus or against him. Surrender to Jesus is the only way to stand with him in the end.

Faithful and True

Hard wired into each of us is a sense of what is right and wrong and, therefore, a desire to see the wicked punished and the righteous vindicated. But none of us like being judged because we know how notoriously unreliable human judgement is. We are inconsistent and unfair in our judgments which is why we need a better judge if we want to see true justice reign over the earth. John sees Jesus revealed in all his glory as the perfect judge who is faithful and true.

Son of God

Our lives are full of waiting. In the waiting we are confronted with how little control we have over our lives and how dependent we are on others. Being dependent can easily induce anxiety because we know how notoriously unreliable we are as humans. But God is not like us. He always keeps his promises and his promises are always worth the wait. Jesus, the Son of God, is all the proof we need.