Let us turn
again to our study of the book of II Peter. Do you remember the two
words that give us the theme of this book? The word ‘apostasy’
which means the forsaking or abandonment of what one has once
professed. The other key word is ‘remembrance’ which means a
statue, a model for imitation, a pattern, a continual blow of a
hammer and to place in the mind as a memorial. May we look at
Chapter 2 and verses 4-6 which I have entitled “Examples Of Wrath”.
This text says,
God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell,
and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto
judgment; And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth
person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the
world of the ungodly; And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha
into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample
unto those that after should live ungodly;”
When we closed out
verse 3 we found the judgment of God seems to linger, to be slow, or
even asleep. Man can be led to the thought that he can get away
with his sins, because there is no swift judgment. Peter gives us
three examples of wrath that assure us ‘God will judge sin’.
The first example
Peter uses is in verse 4, ‘The Angels That Sinned’, This is a
very high and lofty place to fall from as a created being. What was
their sin that would cause God to put them out? It was the sin of
pride, a desire to put oneself above God. They were immediately
cast into hell or as the Old Testament calls it, ‘Gehenna’. (The
place of burning) Dante, an old writer, describes this “as a
place where the air is always black and mute of light.” They
have a reservation there for damnation.
The second example
Peter uses is ‘The Old World That Sinned’. (Vs. 5) This was
the days of Noah. They were called the ‘ungodly world’. It
is a world irreverent, impious, wicked, and have failed to adore or
reverence God. The text says that God saved Noah and seven others
in his family. The word ‘saved’ means to preserve by
shutting in. Noah was a preacher of righteousness. It is only our
Lord’s righteousness that gives us standing with God. God doesn’t
mind damning the most that He might save the least. He will be
glorified. One of the greatest of Jonathan Edward’s sermons during
the Great Awakening was entitled, ‘The Justice Of God In The
Damnation Of The Sinners’. He destroyed the world by
flood. He went to great lengths to open the earth and the heavens
to cover the world with water.
The third example of
His wrath is in verse 6, ‘The Sin Of Sodom And Gomorrha’.
Our Lord turned a land that was green and well watered into an ash
heap. Why would God go to such lengths to destroy this place? They
were involved in the sin of sodomy. (Homosexuals and lesbians) The
weapons of fire and water are interesting weapons. He can destroy
with them or bless with them. In Isaiah 43:2 for the child of God
when we pass through the flood He will be with us and when we walk
through the fire we will not be burned.
Peter tells us in
verse 6 that these were written for our example that we might live
godly. The word ‘ensample’ is a sculptor or painters model.
It is the architect’s plan. The sins of the angels, Noah’s flood,
and Sodom and Gomorrha were the sins of every day America. The sins
of pride, no desire for God, and the sins of sodomy, let us not
think God is overlooking these sins. For Noah’s world it was 120
years in coming. The angels still wait in the pit for their final
damnation. Lot lived for years, raised a family and then married
before judgment came. Judgment will come in a day that I feel
assured when we least expect it. Let us heed these examples left
for us in this Holy Book.