2 Peter 2:4-9
In yesterday’s post, I noted the Apostle Peter’s clear warning against false teachers and their destructive words and ways. Verse 3 closes with the declaration of their coming destruction. In today’s reading, Peter “justifies” God for destroying these corrupted, corrupting teachers by reminding us that God is consistent as well as just: He has a track record of judging corruption.
False teacher, listen up! Those swept up by and swept away with false teachers, listen up!
- For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment;
- And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly;
- And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly;
- And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked:
- (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;)
- The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished:
God’s delays in judgment, at least in the judgment of human corruption, do not at all indicate a new flexibility on His part, as though He has finally come to the place of accepting or at last coexisting with ungodliness. God’s delays in judgment are extensions of mercy.
Those extensions of mercy are expanded opportunities to experience conviction by truth and light, to yield to repentance and brokenness. As surely as God will judge the unjust, He will deliver anyone turning to Him. Including those fooled and blinded by the smooth, well-turned teachings of false teachers. God can even deliver the false teachers themselves. He knows how!
In this life we will always face temptation and spiritual danger. Like Noah and Lot, we live in perilous times and places. I am blessed again to know that the Lord Jesus knows how to deliver His people out of temptations. Since He could do it and did do it for Noah and Lot, He can do it for me.
God doesn’t lead me into temptation, but He will lead me out of it (Matthew 6:13). He will keep me from the evil (John 17:15). But not against my will. And not contrary to my own choices. I will to do His will. I choose to choose godliness.
OK, I’ll add this about verses 7 and 8:
- “Just Lot” indeed! (And “righteous man” and “righteous soul”!) He went further and further among the ungodly. He offered up his daughters for the sexual pleasure of perverted men. He had to be forcibly removed from Sodom by angels.
- And yet the licentious behavior around him wore at him, harrassed him.
- By living among such people, and the sights and sounds of them, Lot tortured his own righteous soul. (So…how am I treating my own soul?)
- What is such vexation like? And why did he put up with it by staying among it? (And what am I putting up with, voluntarily, that I shouldn’t be?)
Warning: If sin doesn’t vex me, it will enthrall, entangle, and vanquish me.