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Volume 23 - Page 65 of 207 Index | Zoom | |
"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"
(II Pet. 3: 13, 14).
"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?" (II Pet. 3: 11, 12).
We observe that both in 1: 4 and in 3: 13 the promise is intimately connected with
sanctification, and the connection becomes even more apparent as we take a wider
survey. For example, the first chapter continues:--
"And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue
knowledge; and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience
godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness love"
(II Pet. 1: 5-7).
Here we have an account of the "manner of persons we ought to be":--
"For if these things be in you and abound, they shall make you that ye shall neither be
barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ" (II Pet. 1: 8).
We hear the echo of this in II Pet. 3: 18:--
"But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ."
These comparisons make in abundantly clear that the great and precious promise of
the Lord's coming is an incentive to sanctification, a teaching which we may discover in
other passages such as I John 3: 3. The great and precious promise that is specially
developed in II Pet. 1: is the promise of the Lord's return, sealed to the heart of Peter by
the vision on the Mount of Transfiguration, and by the "more sure word of prophecy".
This sure word of prophecy may be contrasted with the promise in chapter 2: made
by "false prophets", by the following of which the way of truth is evil spoken of:--
"While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption
. . . . . for if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of
the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the
latter end is worse with them than the beginning" (II Pet. 2: 19, 20).
The statement here seems, on the surface, to be much the same as that of II Pet. 1: 4:--
"Having escaped the corruption that is in the world" (II Pet. 1: 4).
"After they have escaped the pollutions of the world" (II Pet. 2: 20).
We note, however, that in the first instance we have the word "corruption" (phthora),
and in the second the word "pollution" (miasma). The first word means the corruption of
death and the grave, and demands as its answer nothing less than resurrection life and
power; the second conveys the idea of defilement or stain, which may be washed off
without altering the nature of the subject. That this is sound exegesis one more reference