MP3: Traveling Down the Rapture Road in 2 Peter, Lesson 2
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).
Nathan Jones: Let’s find out what happens when a Christian lacks the virtues necessary for spiritual growth as described in 2 Peter 1:9-11.
“For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins. Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble; for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”
Vic Batista: I just love the word diligent. Stay away from those who are spiritual slackers! The passage again says, “therefore, brethren, be more diligent to make your call and election sure.”
Nathan, tell us, how did you end up becoming a student of biblical prophecy?
Nathan Jones: Well, I’ve always had a fascination for the whole Bible, and 31% of the Bible is Bible prophecy. So, to me, the prophetic teachings of the Bible just go hand-in-hand with the teachings about salvation, Christian living, how churches should work, and so on. To me, prophecy is just part of the whole Bible.Nathan Jones: The prophetic teachings of the Bible just go hand-in-hand with the teachings about salvation, Christian living, how churches should work, and so on. To me, #prophecy is just part of the whole #Bible. Click To Tweet
It worries me when I see pastors skip a whole third of the Bible. Why would they possibly throw away a third of the Bible and not address it? Prophecy is both relevant and important. After all, prophecy was important to Jesus, it was important to Peter and John and the other Apostles, and so then it should be important to us as well.
Prophecy doesn’t stand alone, but the Apostles and the Minor Prophets and the Major Prophets all wove their prophecies into the overarching promise of Christ’s return. The advent of the Messiah was interwoven into how they lived and how they interacted with each other and their devotion to Jesus Christ. It wasn’t something separate and placed on a different shelf. Prophecy was integrated into their writings. And, here in 2 Peter, there is a lot of prophecy, and it is integrated into how we should live as Christians. So, it is very important that we follow the Prophets’ and Apostles’ lead while at the same time relishing in that great hope of Jesus Christ coming back one day in fulfillment of those very same prophecies.
Vic Batista: I remember when the Lord starting calling me to serve Him in ministry. My ministry wasn’t focused on biblical prophecy, but prophecy was part of His Word, and so teaching prophecy just comes naturally.
There did come a point in my earlier life when I had to be diligent in terms of preparing myself for what God had called me to do. This is what the Holy Spirit through Peter is doing here in this passage, right?
Nathan Jones: Right. What I love about you Calvary Chapel pastors is that not only do you guys teach through the Bible verse-by-verse, but you integrate Bible prophecy into almost every part of what you teach. Prophecy is not something that you hold a series on once every ten years or so. You integrate what the Bible says, just as Jesus and the Apostles did. They integrated prophecy into Christian living.
And so, it is very important that we do likewise because when we live with the blessed hope of Jesus’ return, one, we feel much more called to evangelize while the time is short. Two, we attempt to live a holy life because Jesus could come at any moment. And, three, we live with the hope in the victory of Jesus Christ. Therefore, understanding Bible prophecy is extremely important in how we see God and how we live out our lives.
Vic Batista: Sometimes people think that they cannot be sure of anything. But, here Peter puts it this way in verse 10, that “when you’re diligent to do these things,” he says, “you will never stumble.” I see that as a certain surety of God’s promises.
Nathan Jones: Yes, Peter sets the bar high here, because I don’t know about you, but I stumble all of the time. As Christians, we’re to produce the Fruit of the Spirit: faith, virtue, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness, and love. These spiritual fruit are essential to being a Christian. They run against what the world does, for the world produces the opposite kind of fruit.
For Christians, we aim to become like Christ in our purity. Peter is not saying that when we stumble we make our election unsure and so lose our salvation, for there are plenty of verses that say otherwise. What Peter is saying is that we cannot stay a baby Christian. We just can’t! We’ve got to grow, and the only way to grow is to dive deeper into living out these different attributes of Christ. Again, we do that in part by reading our Bible, praying, going to Church, having Christian friends, and practicing the other spiritual disciplines.
Vic Batista: This thought ends in verse 11 which reads, “so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” What a promise! Live your life pursuing Christ and you never have to doubt your salvation.
In the sixth part of our faith journey down the Rapture Road through the book of 2 Peter, Peter will foreshadow his own death!