from Lynda Lindsey
Reading: 2 Peter 2:4-21
Lent: A Journey to the Cross
The King Is Coming; Prepare Ye the Way
Keep to the Straightway; No Wandering on the Journey
II Peter 2:4-21
For if God…protected Noah, a preacher of righteousness, and seven others…
and if He rescued Lot, a righteous man who was distressed
by the filthy lives of lawless men… II Peter 2:4-5; 7
if this is so, then the Lord knows how to rescue godly men from trials and to hold
the unrighteous for the day of judgment… II Peter 2:9a
They have left the straight way and wandered off… II Peter 2:15a
Peter’s somber warnings about ungodly false teachers, and the certain destruction that awaits them from holy God sits in stark contrast to the godly examples of Noah and Lot. Peter assures us that God never tolerates unconfessed sin and unrepentant sinners. The unrighteous and ungodly, those who refuse God’s atoning sacrifice, and those who entice others to sin will not escape God’s righteous judgement. God, as some think, is not slow to bring judgement; rather God, in His mercy, tarries desiring many to come to repentance.
Peter urges us to keep to the straightway, to not wander away from the true path, as many had done, and as many still do today. Wandering leads to complacency and danger. Peter cites Noah and Lot as worthy role models. Noah, while not sinless, was a righteous, blameless man, one who walked with God by faith. Noah wholeheartedly loved God and was the last God-follower of his time pre-flood. God graciously protected Noah and his family from the rising floodwaters.
Lot’s life, recorded in Genesis chapters 13-19, takes grievous twists and turns, yet Scripture calls Lot a righteous man, one who was distressed by the filthy lives of lawless men. Lot, like Noah, is counted righteous not by deeds but by faith in God. Lot made many calamitous, even sinful, decisions; yet God, a heart-knower, extended His mercy and rescued Lot. Lot, like Noah, was not sinless. Neither are we free from sin and wrongdoing. Yet we rejoice that a repentant sinner’s confession brings forgiveness! God made us and seeks a relationship with us. He is faithful, even in the midst of our faithlessness. He seeks us out, calls to us, reaches out to us even as we hide in shame and fear. Even as we suffer the consequences of our sin God protects us. He extends mercy and grace to us, removing our filthy rags, clothing us with His righteousness. The same God who protected Noah and rescued Lot knows how to rescue other godly men from trials. God is trustworthy. He can be relied upon. Turn to God. Trust His protection. Live by faith. Keep to the straightway. No wandering…for wandering leads to danger.