Read: 2 Peter 3:1-10
Reflect: I love watching sports events. I especially enjoy when I’m surrounded by fellow fans who also have “skin in the game”. At times, however, I find that there is a scoffer in the crowd. That’s the person who fashions himself as an expert and they ridicule the performance of the team and then predict their downfall. A scoffer is “someone who laughs and speaks about a person or idea in a way that shows that they think that person or idea is stupid or silly”. A scoffer is the person who leaves in the 9th inning, thinking that a comeback is impossible. Well as Yogi Berra said, "It ain't over till it's over."
In 2 Peter 3, Peter warns of spiritual scoffers, those who have spiritually left in the 9th inning, sure that God’s promises are set for failure. They poke fun at that which is promised because of its delayed fulfillment. To sum it up, spiritual scoffers are those who mock the promised second coming of Christ because they yet to see it happen.
Peter reminds us that there were scoffers at the time of Noah. The world made fun of Noah day in and day out because they thought God’s coming judgment was a joke. They could not imagine that the world of that time could be deluged and destroyed by water with one simple word of God. Peter warns that those who scoff at a future judgment will like those in the time of Noah and find it to be a terrifying day of vengeance.
An important fact is that God’s delay is due to the character of God because “He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” God is truly longsuffering and merciful, allowing time for sinners to repent and turn to knowing and following Jesus. God takes no delight in the death of sinners. For us as believers, Christ’s return is not a waiting game of patience to be endured, but it is to be a time of devoted kingdom work, reaching the world for Christ while there is still time. Peter uses the metaphor “as a thief in the night” to describe the moment of the return of Christ. In the days of Noah, the mockers and scoffers were caught by surprise when the rain began to fall. It is our mission to remind everyone that the game is not over and that God is still Sovereign and has promised to return. "It ain't over till it's over."
Apply: As believers there is little we can do to control or fend off a culture that delights in making us the object of their derision. God has incredible longsuffering and merciful compassion for the lost and that should be our entire attitude. As God tarries, prayerfully consider what you can do to reach out in love to the unreached. Here at Grace Community, we are embracing the concept of making room for one more. How might you become involved in this Kingdom work of spreading the saving good news of Jesus Christ? Remember "It ain't over till it's over", till the very last act of sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been accomplished.
Written by Fred Stehman
Fred is a Charter Member of GCC and serves as Lay Delegate to the Evangelical Congregational National Conference as well as being a member of the GCC Ministry Council. Fred is active in GCC Men's Ministry and actively supports SportXchange Int'l Ministries