Editor’s note: Campfire Scripture: Bible verses every week day followed by a short manful devotional. For sitting around the campfire (or thinking about sitting around the campfire).
Uncommon scriptures full of manly wisdom, inspiration and hard truth.
So whip up a cuppa, rest your head on red gum stump and enjoy.
Book Author and Date:
Peter, a disciple and apostle of Jesus Christ authored 1 and 2 Peter. The date of authorship was likely about 67-68 A.D. just before Peter’s martyrdom under the Roman emperor Nero’s persecution of Christians.
Right living, judgement, temptation.
2 Peter was written to condemn false teachers, prophets and otherwise heretical teaching in the church. This passage follows on from the beginning of chapter two where Peter describes false teachers and their destiny (not something to look forward to), he here describes that He will also rescue the godly.
What I reckon:
Just prior to this Peter describes false teachers which can be characterized as having at least these qualities: heretical teaching, sensuality, greed, exploitation, false teaching (2 Peter 2).
Firstly this is just another great verse with broad and vivid imagery of the day of judgement, casting our mind to a grand picture of the future and of the magnificence of God and his plan.
Peter is contrasting the final judgement of the godly from the ungodly. Temptation here can also be understood as judgement, hence those who are godly will be saved, and those who are not will be kept ‘under punishment for the day of judgement’. But it also makes sense to just understand the word temptation plainly too. The Lord does know how to rescue us from temptation as the Bible tells us that elsewhere (1 Corinthians 10:13). So ask yourself this, if you’re willingly living in your sin and enjoying it, then can you really call yourself godly? If you’re not being rescued from your temptation, is it because you ‘indulge in the flesh’? I know that was certainly true of me before I was saved.
Remember he’s talking in this case specifically about false teachers, those who love themselves more than the Lord, and who twist his words, teaching half truths to mislead and deceive. The lost indulge in the desires of the flesh. The flesh here is referring not just to physical flesh, but worldly desire in general. I was never a ‘false teacher’ because I never taught, but if you asked me in my early twenties if I was a Christian I would’ve said ‘hmmm yeaaaaa, I dunn, I guess’. I certainly didn’t want to say I was a non-Christian. I was however, not being rescued from my temptation. I was given over to it. People might think I’m talking about the partying, and the drinking and chasing tail, but the problem was more my love of those things and their central importance in my life. Once I was saved I began to pursue righteousness. Not immediately, and by no means perfectly, but the difference is that Christ becomes the focus.
When we become godly, we begin to fight the temptation, not be given to it.
All Campfire Scripture passages are taken from the New American Standard Bible, unless otherwise stated.
John MacArthur, 2006, The MacArthur Study Bible, New American Standard Bible (1995 edition).