One of my favorite areas to study since becoming a disciple of Jesus Christ has been eschatology, or the study of end time events and the ultimate destiny of humanity. This is a topic that we all should be extremely knowledgeable of and prepare for, as it is one of the main topics Jesus spoke about during His earthly ministry. The book of II Peter has some amazing insight into the end of the age and some incredible advice for us all to follow.
First, it should be noted that Scripture says during the end times people will become “scoffers” and “willingly ignorant” about Christ’s return, God’s creation of the world and his previous judgement through a worldwide flood.
“Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts. And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation. For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water: Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished:” – 2 Peter 3:3-6 (emphasis mine)
Many people who call themselves Christians today even deny the Biblical account of creation and the occurrence of a worldwide flood! This is clearly a sign we are living in end times! The lie of evolution has so deeply permeated our world that it has created doubt and fear amongst countless believers! For anyone looking for evidence of a global flood watch this. Or to see the actual discovery of Noah’s ark watch this. The reality is, there is more scientific evidence proving the Bible to be true than any other book, but the scoffers still scoff! To be “willingly ignorant” basically means to be “dumb on purpose” and all you have to do is watch an interview of Richard Dawkins to see an amazing example of that truth! (sorry, not sorry! lol)
Peter goes on to say that God’s timing is perfect because He does not want anyone to perish! He also gives some amazing advice that we should all prayerfully consider; I believe all believers should deeply examine their priorities in light of this information:
“The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, 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; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.” – 2 Peter 3:9-14 (emphasis mine)
Peter is saying in verse 11 that since everything is going to burn, what kind of person should you be? What are you doing with your time and where are you laying up your treasures? On earth or in heaven? (Matthew 6:19-21)
Peter instructs us to look for the new heavens and new earth, where the earth will become inherently righteous instead of inherently evil as it is today! He instructs us to study and to live a repentant lifestyle! And in the final verses of the chapter he instructs us to be on guard, that we don’t fall into error but instead grow in grace and knowledge of the Lord!
“Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own steadfastness. But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.” – 2 Peter 3:17-18 (emphasis mine)
The somber yet exquisite truth we must face is that the entire world as we know it will soon come to an end, it will all burn, yet it be completely regenerated! (Isaiah 51:3, Matthew 19:28, Acts 3:20-21, Romans 8:19-21) It’s regeneration is the birth of the new heavens and a new earth (Isaiah 65:17, Isaiah 66:22, Revelation 21:1) and this new world will be holy and pure and righteous! (Isaiah 1:26, 32:16)
So in summary here’s what we must do to prepare:
- Don’t be willingly ignorant, but study and be found blameless in the eyes of the Lord.
- Live a repentant lifestyle and witness to others so they will come to repentance too.
- Realize it’s all going to burn and live a holy and godly life.
- Look for the new heavens and new earth and be diligent.
- Beware so you don’t fall.
- Grow in grace and knowledge of the Lord.
- Glorify God.
We live in a world where iniquity abounds and more and more people’s love is growing cold (Matthew 24:12), so it is of the utmost importance that God’s children seek His face, look for His will in everything and be obedient to His instruction! (Psalm 27:8, Psalm 105:3-4, Psalm 119:2, John 2:5) Lastly pray that God would search out your heart and lead you in the way everlasting:
“Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” – Psalm 139:23-24
None of us is promised a tomorrow and I believe the earth as we know it is coming to an end very soon. Let us make sure we are investing in the right kingdom.
Which of these areas are you succeeding in? Which areas need work?