Part 3: God’s Use of Time
In my two previous posts based on Second Peter 3:1-12, we first looked at the way God measures time according to the fulfillment of Bible prophecies and, secondly, that he calculates time according to his own time and design.
In Part Three of our subject, we are looking at God’s use of time as it involves his own plan of salvation.What many fail to realize is that God’s time for Jesus to return will come when he is ready, not when people THINK he should be ready. People who try to change the Word of God to fit their own concepts and theories are just too blind to see that THEY are the ones who need to change. “I’m waiting,” God says, “When are YOU going to change and accept the truth that my Son is coming again?”
Some think that God is just too slow—that he is just taking too long—to do what he says he’ll do. But remember what the Apostle Peter said, “The Lord is not slow about his promise as some count slowness,” (v. 9). Consider what some think about God’s slowness:
- “I’ve been praying all this time and he STILL hasn’t answered my prayer, yet! Are you ever going to answer me, Lord?”
- “I’ve been trying real hard to overcome this difficult situation but nothing ever changes. When are you going to do something about this, Lord?”
- Another year has come and God doesn’t seem any closer than last year. Even though I’m reading the Bible more, giving more money in the offering plate, and started attending church more regularly, I don’t feel any different. I’ve done my part, Lord. Why do you seem to be taking your high ol’ time to do your part for me?”
These are the kinds of questions that reveal a narrow way of thinking. They show a true misunderstanding of the way God works. They do not understand that God wants to give time for people to accept Christ as their Savior and Lord so they will be saved. We can be so thankful that God is allowing enough time for people to repent of their sins for he is “not wishing for any to perish,” (v. 9).
I mentioned before that God is extending his “Grace Period” before his Son returns. His slowness not only shows the patience he has, but it demonstrates his compassion and mercy, too. God chooses to wait; he doesn’t have to. He could have sent his Son back a long time ago and judged all of us to the destruction we deserve. But God has given us time to get our act together and repent of our sins. He is waiting “for all to come to repentance” (v. 9) while there is still time before the trumpet sounds and the New Day dawns. And that’s another reason why Jesus hasn’t come back yet.
We should all get on our knees and thank God for being patient with us. He is patient enough to allow us to work out our “own salvation with fear and trembling,” (Philippians 2:12). He gives us time to make our own mistakes so that we can more effectively learn and grow spirituallyu. He doesn’t drive us into submission, he guides us into it much like a shepherd guides his sheep. If we follow him, as sheep, he will supply us with all our needs as his will is done (Isaiah 53:6-7; Phil. 4:19).
Those who refuse to be led by God and choose, instead, to go their own way are the very ones who will not be ready when Jesus comes. For them, his coming will be “as a thief in the night,” (1 Thessalonians 5:2-4; Revelation 16:15). Their “why’s” will give rise to surprise for they will have made absolutely no preparation for the time “when the day of the Lord” DOES take place.
This is reminder and warning for all of us in regard to “what sort of people ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness,” (2 Pet. 3:11). Our aim as Kingdom Seekers is to conduct ourselves according to God’s will no matter when the Day of the Lord comes. Whether he returns this year, next year, or any year, we do not stop “looking for and hastening the coming of the Day of God….,” (2 Pet. 3:12).
Peter said, “Therefore, beloved, since you look for these things, be diligent to be found by him in peace, spotless and blameless, and regard the patience of our Lord to be salvation….” (2 Pet. 3:14-15a).
Maybe, instead of asking, “Why hasn’t Jesus come back yet?” we should be asking, “Will I be ready when he DOES come back”?
Here’s a medly of songs on Jesus Is Coming Again by the original Toney Brothers: https://youtu.be/L4OiMSx73Gw
Good News to YOU!