"HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE?"
I. PETER TELLS US OF A MAJOR EVENT THAT IS COMING. HE CALLS IT THE DAY OF THE LORD.
A. There are many passages of scripture that speak of the day of the Lord.
1. From the scriptures it seems to refer to a period of time that will begin when Jesus comes for His church, and will continue with His judgment upon this Christ rejecting world, commonly known as the great tribulation. It continues through His establishing His Kingdom on the earth, and the great white throne judgment of God, and into the dissolving of this universe and the creation of the new heavens and earth.
For the day of the LORD of hosts [shall be] upon every [one that is] proud and lofty, and upon every [one that is] lifted up; and he shall be brought low:
And they shall go into the holes of the rocks, and into the caves of the earth, for fear of the LORD, and for the glory of his majesty, when he ariseth to shake terribly the earth.
Howl ye; for the day of the LORD [is] at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty.
Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it.
Therefore I will shake the heavens, and the earth shall remove out of her place, in the wrath of the LORD of hosts, and in the day of his fierce anger.
Lift up your eyes to the heavens, and look upon the earth beneath: for the heavens shall vanish away like smoke, and the earth shall wax old like a garment, and they that dwell therein shall die in like manner: but my salvation shall be for ever, and my righteousness shall not be abolished.
Alas for the day! for the day of the LORD [is] at hand, and as a destruction from the Almighty shall it come.
The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the LORD come.
Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision: for the day of the LORD [is] near in the valley of decision.
Woe unto you that desire the day of the LORD! to what end [is] it for you? the day of the LORD [is] darkness, and not light.
Therefore wait ye upon me, saith the LORD, until the day that I rise up to the prey: for my determination [is] to gather the nations, that I may assemble the kingdoms, to pour upon them mine indignation, [even] all my fierce anger: for all the earth shall be devoured with the fire of my jealousy.
B. Peter tells us that it is coming as a thief in the night.
1. That is it is coming when people are not expecting it.
2. Jesus said if the master had known when the thief was coming his house would not have been broken into.
3. Jesus said, "In such an hour as you think not, the Son of Man is coming."
4. Jesus said, "Watch ye therefore and be ready, for you know not the day or the hour the Son of Man is coming."
II. WHAT IS GOING TO HAPPEN WHEN THE DAY OF THE LORD COMES?
A. Peter said, "And seeing that all these things shall be dissolved." What are the these things?
1. The heavens.
2. The elements.
3. The earth.
4. All of the works in the earth.
B. What is going to happen to them?
1. They will pass away with a great noise.
2. They shall melt with a fervent heat.
3. They shall be burned up.
4. They will be dissolved.
C. Some scientist have suggested the possibility of anti-matter.
1. That is, that there are possibly atoms that are reversed in their construction.
2. Atoms whose nucleus is made up of electrons, and the protons are revolving about the electrons.
3. According to their conjecture, if anti-matter would ever come into contact with matter, their would be an explosion, of gigantic proportions greater than any atomic bomb that has ever been developed.
4. Some suggest that this is possibly what happened in Siberia in 1906 in that mysterious explosion that leveled hundreds of square miles of forested land. They suggest that a meteor of anti-matter struck the earth.
D. The entire material universe is made up of atoms.
1. In the heart or nucleus of the atom are tightly compacted protons, or positive charges, and neutrons which are electrically neutral. The number of protons in the nucleus determines the element.
2. The protons in the nucleus of an atom have an equal number of electrons or negative charges revolving around the nucleus at unbelievable speeds. So fast that they give the atoms a feeling of being solid. It would be much like trying to put your finger through a fan.
3. Most of the mass of the atom is in the proton, but that is so small that laying them side by side, 25,000,000 would only be one inch long.
4. The electrons are much smaller than the proton. Laying electrons side by side, it would take 2.5 quintillion or 2.5 x 10 to the 15th power to span one inch.
5. An atom has far more space that solid material. The simplest atom is a hydrogen atom which has only one proton and one electron. If a hydrogen atom were 4 miles in diameter, the nucleus would be the size of a tennis ball.
6. The mystery of the atom is how the protons remain clustered in the nucleus. According to Colombs law of electricity like charges repel, and opposite charges attract. Kids playing with magnets learn this law of physics.
7. What holds the positive charges together in the nucleus of an atom?
8. How, we do not know, that they are, we do know and this knowledge led to the development of the atom bomb. The scientist upset the nucleus of an atom by bombarding it with slow moving neutrons and they were able to split the atom, and release the tremendous energy stored in an atom.
9. The real mystery is what holds the atoms together? The Bible gives us the answer. It tells us that Jesus is not only the Creator, but He is the object of creation, and by Him all things are held together. Col. 1:17
10. Basically one of these days, Jesus will release his hold on the material universe, and in a moment, all will disappear as Peter describes here in the text.
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 hastening the coming of the day of
God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?
II. IN LIGHT OF THE COMING DISINTEGRATION OF THE MATERIAL UNIVERSE, WHAT MANNER OF PERSONS OUGHT WE TO BE?
A. That is the question, how should we be living?
B. If the material universe is to be destroyed, surely I would be a fool to be a materialist. To place all my stock in material things.
1. If I count my treasure and worth by my material possessions when it is dissolved, I will have nothing.
2. That is exactly why Jesus exhorted His disciples not to lay up treasures on earth, where moth and rust can corrode, or thieves steal. At best, you can't take it with you.
C. Peter answers his own question. "In all holy manner of living and godliness." vs11
1. We should strive to be living godly spiritual lives.
2. We should place our greatest efforts toward spiritual things.
D. We should be looking for and seeking to hasten the coming day of God.
1. Is it possible for us to hasten the day of the Lord's return?
2. How could we possibly do that?
a. Jesus said, "When you pray, say, Thy Kingdom come Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven."
b. We should seek to hasten the coming of the Lord by praying for it.
c. By getting the gospel out. The Bible speaks of the fullness of the Gentiles coming in, then God once again working with the nation of Israel.
d. By seeking to the gospel message to all the world.
And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
E. Vs. 14 "Be diligent"
1. That is diligent in the things of the Lord.
Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?
Blessed [is] that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.
Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods.
But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming;
And shall begin to smite [his] fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken;
The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for [him], and in an hour that he is not aware of,
And shall cut him asunder, and appoint [him] his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
2. Now is not the time for relaxing, but for great diligence in the things of the Lord.
3. When He comes may He find us in peace. That is peace with God. Not in the turmoil that rebellion against His laws brings.
4. Without spot and blameless.
F. I suppose that main question is, if the Lord should come today would you be prepared to meet Him?
1. I cannot tell you just when the Lord is coming, but I can say that my personal conviction is that He is coming very soon, much sooner than most people realize.
2. As Paul wrote to the Romans, "It is high time to wake up for now is our salvation nearer than we f*/first believed.