2nd Peter 3:9, "The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is long-suffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance." Have you ever did a really good study of this verse? I mean a 'really good' study? It will answer an awful lot of questions, that many have. Why does God delay? Why does so much evil go on and on? Why is there so much injustice in the world? While many of these things do cause us to question, the answer is most likely found, right here. God is patient, long-suffering, toward man-kind. God is 'not willing' that any should perish. What does that mean? Is this simple statement, all that complicated? The verse finishes, 'but that all should come to repentance'. Now, lets just keep this simple, how many does this say God desires to come to repentance? Well, it says 'all'. To say that God wills someone to hell, with no chance, or choice, of repentance, destroys this scripture. What would be wrong there? The statement, of course. This scripture very plainly says what God wills. The Gospel of Jesus Christ, is a 'whosoever' Gospel. John 3:16. If any chooses hell, unbelief, unrepentance, that is going to be their choice. The overwhelming majority are indeed gonna choose against believing in Jesus Christ, and against trusting and following Him. It is an individual choice, because that is NOT what God desires, we just read the scripture. Romans 9 has to take this scripture into account, proper interpretation will not destroy and contradict other scripture, on the same topic, it will accompany it. The love and mercy of God is so hard for us to fully understand. As is Gods Holiness, and Justice. There is no half-way with God. You either believe in Him, or you do not. You either love and trust Him, or you do not. We do not hide our true self from God. He knows us better than we know ourselves. And, those who know Him, obey and follow Him. We can talk Gods way, but if we are not walking Gods way, it is all vain. God knew, and knows, the people who only want the benefits, but are not interested in walking in His way, through Jesus Christ. Even they serve His purposes. Those who choose unbelief, through dis-obedience, and stiff-necked and hard hearts, God also uses for His own purposes, as they store up wrath that will be coming against them. As God told Pharoah, "For this same purpose I have raised thee up." Mankind will be without excuse before God. No 'but', 'why', 'did', 'did not', 'have', 'have not'. Not one accusation against our Almighty God will stand, on the day which is soon coming. "For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools." Rom 1:20-22. "Jesus answered and said unto him, If any man love me, he will keep My words, and my Father will love him, and We will come unto him, and make our abode with him. He that loveth Me not keepeth not My sayings, and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Fathers which sent Me." John 14:23,24. Let us choose Jesus Christ.
Dear Billy--Another passage which helps clarify is Romans 1. Three times, Paul wrote, "God gave them over. . . ." Over to what? What they were already intent on doing.
God wants all to be saved, but He does not arm-wrestle us into the Kingdom.
Adam and Eve ignored the Tree of Life--which is Jesus Himself--in preference for the burden of choice between good and evil which God never intended man to have. FREEDOM of choice? Puh-lease. I can't even handle choosing what toppings I want on a pizza.
The day-in-day-out choices I have to make between telling a lie and telling the truth is a greater burden than I wish I had. Throw in all of the other choices between sin and obedience, and that is how I define the word "burden."
And you are right. Hell is a choice--not a sentence from God. Be blessed in the Lord, my brother--Ron
So easy to point to God and blame Him for everything we chose wrong.
For a change we need to remember He loves us.. to the end.
If we choose wrongly we pay for it.. He warned us first
And we cannot blame Him for being loving and just.
Thanks for your sharing.
As I read the OT, there are so many places where God says "I kept my part of our contract, but what about you?"
God's contracts (covenants) include penalty clauses. God's still honoring His part of the deal!
Great blog, my friend!
This is one of the strongest verses in the Bible (made by Peter) pertaining to the Rapture of the Church.
2 Peter 3:9...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.
Notice the Us-ward! Us-ward are members of the Church the body of Christ that God is longsuffering toward. Now! Present tense! In this Church Age! Mercy! Longsuffering! Waiting for men to change their minds! Waiting for men to "escape" Tribulation, Wrath, and Divine Judgment...by accepting Christ. Salvation of the soul so they do not perish!
In the Rapture of the Church Jesus does not place one single foot on planet Earth. Jesus "calls out" the Church to meet with Him in the air. This event takes place "before" Christ returns with all His saints to establish His Kingdom on Earth. Partakers of the Rapture are those dead and those alive in Christ who repented! They changed their minds before the Rapture. They accepted Christ before Judgement fell upon Earth for seven years.
After the Rapture the Holy Spirit steps aside and lets the Anti-christ step in. In other words the Holy Spirit's mercy that "hinders" the Anti-Christ from reigning on the planet Earth is no longer the withholder of Satans dominion. God's Wrath and Divine Judgement begins on earth for 7 years...when the Church is caugthe up to meet with Christ in the air.
Those who will perish...are the rejectors of Christ that Peter is speaking of. These scoffers are those who will perish under the wrath of an angry God that takes place during Satan's dominion. After the Church is caught up! These people "willingly" are ignorant of truth and refuse to accept Christ before the Rapture of the Church. Most will perish during the seven years by recieving the mark of the beast. Some who overcome by the word of their testimony will make it through Tribulation...Blessed and holy are these who make it, When Christ returns with hIs saints...at the end of the Tribulation.
Many are slack today. What are they waiting for? Why are they willingly ignorant?
Today as we preach and minister truth in the Gospel message to a decieved and unbelieving world...God's longsuffering reaches out toward the hearts of men and women with hope that men turn from their unholiness and disobedience toward God...and find holiness and Eternal Bliss in the hope and future that's found in Heaven...only through the death, burial, and resurrection of my Lord and Saviour ...Jesus Christ.
Especially to my dear Brother in the Lord...Billy B. who stirs hearts...and also to all those who love Christ and read at this ChristianBlog. Glory!
Great blog Billy, it is God's will that none should perish. The sad reality is many are called and few are chosen. The heart of man is deperately wicked and many will and do choose hell to serve the pleasures of an unfulfilling life that leads to death and eternal darkness, over a free gift of eternal life and the love of the Father through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. God is always faithful and always just.
God bless my brother!
A verse that sums up for me God's love for all and His longing desire for all to come to Him through faith in Christ is 1 John 2:1-2 :
"My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have one who speaks to the Father in our defense - Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world." (NIV)
Excellent blog Brother,:) Praise the Lord for His patience! If He would have come for His church before I got saved, then I would have been lost eternally.
Enjoyed your message here...it is needed and very timely.
It is "whosoever." A man or woman can't choose God until or unless God has first chosen him, and drawn him in grace to Himself (John 6:44) and we see that God has chosen man by sending His beloved Son to die for man. "Whosoever." It's our choice.
"For there is no partiality with God" --Romans 2:11