MP3: Traveling Down the Rapture Road in 2 Peter, Lesson 1
Hosts: Nathan Jones & Vic Batista
Continue traveling down the Rapture Road with Nathan Jones and Vic Batista in this verse-by-verse study of the incredibly prophetic book of 2 Peter! You can start at the beginning with Part 1 or listen in to The Truth Will Set You Free podcast (above).
Room Temperature Coffee
Nathan Jones: Alright, let’s talk about some powerfully packed prophecies! Second Peter 1:5-11 is about having fruitful growth by being hot, not cold, in the faith. Let’s start with verses 5-7 which read:
“But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, and to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, and to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love.”
Vic Batista: I drew some little steps like a ladder in my Bible because I noticed this step-by-step growth process. As we’re developing our Christian life, we find these little steps will help us grow in the grace and the knowledge of Christ Jesus.
Nathan Jones: Notice Peter’s emphasis on giving all diligence to adding to your faith. In other words, don’t just occasionally go to church on Sunday, or read your Bible once or twice a year, or pray only when you feel like it. He’s talking about being diligent in the work of growing.
I believe living with such diligence is one of the spiritual disciplines that the Church in these end times lacks. We are definitely behaving like the Church of Laodicea. Revelation 3 described this church as the apathetic church. We think we’re wealthy and we’ve got it all, but in truth, we are poor, naked, and blind, as Jesus says. Why? Not maybe financially or materialistically, but spiritually we lack the excitement. Our relationship with our Savior is treated like an old marriage where the couple has been married for 50 years and they’re too used to each other. Sure, they love each other, but there’s no passion, there’s no excitement, and there is no diligence. That’s what our relationship in the West has been like with Jesus as of late.
But no, Peter says we should be diligent in our spiritual relationship in order to grow in the faith. Look how when Christians are under persecution how diligent they are in knowing God. We draw closer because we become more dependent on Him, and that’s what we as Christians need to be — diligent.
Vic Batista: One of the biggest challenges I’ve encountered as I meet with other pastors and talk with them is the temperature of Christians today. As you mentioned from Revelation 3 where the Lord says to the effect, “I want you to be hot or cold, but you shouldn’t be tepid.” What we often find here today is no real decision made for Christ, rather so many equivocate and are lukewarm about having a relationship with God.
Nathan Jones: Vic, you love coffee, right? You are a coffee drinker. You like it hot, and you like it cold, right? But, do you like coffee that is just room temperature?
Vic Batista: No, absolutely not.
Nathan Jones: I’ve got my coffee mug sitting here. Right now it’s become room temperature. It is not hot, and it is not cold. It is dull. And, it is tasteless. It is not warming me up. It’s not hitting me with that good taste of coldness, for it is just room temperature. Most people don’t like room temperature coffee.
And, Jesus Christ explicitly in Revelation 3 says He doesn’t like room temperature Christians. He just doesn’t! They are neither hot for Him, nor cold for Him; they are just there. They are boring. They have no interest in building a relationship. They are just kind of taking up space.Nathan Jones: Jesus Christ explicitly in Revelation 3 says He doesn't like room temperature Christians. They are neither hot for Him, nor cold for Him; they are just there taking up space. Click To Tweet
Peter is saying here that if you are a Christian and you are living in the end times, as we are, then we need to be diligent about our faith. We need to be either hot or cold. When you’re lukewarm then you’re just a cultural Christian and Jesus says he’ll spit you out. But, if you are going to be in Jesus’ camp, if you’re going to be one of His children, then be diligent, be excited, and get to know Jesus Christ. Diligence means getting to know Jesus through regular prayer and Bible study and through fellowship with other Christians. Go to church regularly, not just once a year or twice a year, but weekly, if not twice a week. Be excited about Jesus! Jesus knows if you are excited about Him or not.
Vic Batista: Wow, what an excellent point! The Apostle Paul wants to ignite our passion for Jesus Christ. He wants us to be on fire for the Lord so that we can make a difference in these last days. Go impact the life of somebody else.
It’s true that nobody really likes lukewarm individuals. They are the most confusing kind of Christians because they say they are for Jesus but then they are stuck living in carnality.
Nathan Jones: Right, they are a cup of lukewarm coffee sitting there untouched and they’re not growing or going anywhere in their spiritual growth. Jesus certainly doesn’t want that for us. He doesn’t want people to just sit there and be lethargic and comfortable in our own little space. He wants us to be challenged. He wants us to be excited.
When I was dating my soon-to-be wife, it was an exciting time period. It’s still exciting. We rejoice with each other. But, back then, if she was just dull and just sat there and showed very little interest in me, the relationship never would have happened. God, I’d imagine, feels the same way. God might be God, but He built us in His image, and so God gets excited when His children get excited about Him as well. If we’re not, why bother, right? But, that’s not what God wants for us.
Rekindling the Fire
Vic Batista: Jesus Christ has made such wonderfully precious promises to His children, but they’re received through a relationship with Him. That is why Peter is encouraging individuals to have that by becoming bondservants of Jesus Christ.
Maybe you recognize that you’ve become a lukewarm individual. Or, maybe you don’t know Christ personally at all. Maybe you once knew Jesus but now you’ve backslidden from the Lord. Well, why not come back? Why settle for second best when you can be connected with God Almighty, Creator of the Universe? Return to your first love! Kickstart your relationship with the Lord right now.
Nathan Jones: I think Peter says it best in verse 4, that God wants us to “be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.” For those right now who do not know Jesus as your Savior, you are enslaved to the world by your lusts. Not maybe physical lusts, but lusts for food, the lust for money, and the things that you desire that are not godly. God wants you to give those up because they are worthless and will quickly pass. They won’t go with you into the Eternal State.
The true treasure of life is knowing Jesus Christ — the Creator Himself — as your Savior. In order to know Jesus as your Savior, you must place your faith and trust in Him. You accept Jesus Christ as being the Son of God and your Savior. Pray from your heart something like, “Dear, Jesus, please forgive me of my sins and be my Lord and Savior.” Jesus will respond to you reaching out to Him in faith. He wants to save you from your sins and give you a new life in Him, but first, you must place your faith and trust in Jesus Christ alone.
Vic Batista: Even if one sinner repents, there is a celebration in Heaven, the Bible teaches. Let today be the day of your salvation!
In the fourth part of our faith journey down the Rapture Road through the book of 2 Peter, we’ll continue diving into chapter 1.