Questions to Consider
1. Read verse 1, noticing the words “beloved” and “sincere mind”. What do these words tell you about how Peter regarded his audience as opposed to…say…how Paul regarded the Galatian Christians?
2. Compare verses 1-3 with Jude 17-19. What does it mean for someone to be a “scoffer”? Make a list of all the words and phrases Peter and Jude use to describe scoffers. Do these words and phrases sound like they are describing lost people or saved people? Examine 2 Peter 2 (or lesson 11, link above) and the remainder of Jude – which words and phrases indicate that some scoffers are false converts (people who claim to be and/or believe themselves to be saved, but aren’t)?
Describe a prototypical lost person (makes no claim to be a Christian) scoffer. Describe a prototypical false convert scoffer. (These might be people you know personally, celebrities, authors, etc.) What’s something you might say, or a question you might ask each of these people as a lead-in to a gospel conversation?
3. Verse 4- What are the scoffers scoffing about? Have you ever heard a lost person scoff at or ridicule this? Read verses 5-7. How does Peter address the argument the scoffers make? What does it mean that they “deliberately overlook” the facts Peter lays out in 5-7? Explain why, in order for a scoffer to hold an anti-biblical view (evolution, abortion, egalitarianism, sexual perversion, etc.), she must first “deliberately overlook” biblical facts or “suppress the truth in unrighteousness.”
4. Examine verses 5-13. What is the main topic this passage deals with? How does Peter compare and contrast God’s creation (and first destruction) of the earth with His final destruction of the earth? In what ways will the final destruction be like the first destruction (the Flood)? What does this have to do with the return of Christ (4)?
5. Have you ever been in a situation in which a scoffer made an argument that seemed plausible, or asked a question you couldn’t answer (ex: If God is so good and so powerful, why does He allow evil and suffering?), and you knew she was wrong, but you didn’t know what the biblical answer was? Did you feel confused and anxious? That’s kind of the situation Peter’s audience is in here. Explain each of the components of Peter’s answer to the scoffers’ argument:
How would Peter’s answer to the scoffers’ argument have set the minds of his audience at ease, brought them comfort, and given them hope?
6. Read verses 8, 9, and 15a together. Compare and contrast our impatience for the Lord’s return with His patience toward the world. Why is the Lord taking so long – from our perspective – to come back?
7. Using your cross-references, what does verse 9 teach us about the heart of God toward the unregenerate?
8. Examine verses 11-18. “What sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness” considering that Christ could return at any moment? Make a list of the instructions Peter gives us for the way we should live as we await the Lord’s return:
Be sure to… Be sure NOT to…
Second Peter 3:8 is often used by Old Earth Creationists and Theistic Evolutionists as a prooftext to explain how God could have taken millions of years to create the earth. Examining this verse in the entire context of chapter 3, is that what Peter, inspired by the Holy Spirit, intended when he wrote this verse? What was he intending to convey when he wrote this? Explain why it’s important to always use verses in their right context when building doctrine, claiming promises, supporting an argument, applying Scripture to our personal circumstances, etc.
Suggested Memory Verse
Be sure to come back next week as we wrap up
Living Stones: A Study of 1&2 Peter!