Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny
But, according to his promise, we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth, in which righteousness truly resides. Therefore, dear friends, since you are waiting for these things, strive to be found at peace, without spot or blemish, when you come into his presence. 2 Peter 3.13-14
In this corrupt world in which we live, it is hard to imagine a place where righteousness resides. Peter has just written in the verses before these about the destruction of the earth and heavens. Yes, it is coming. The day of God will arrive. Peter asks the question about how we should conduct ourselves in view of this future event. One can deny the fact that the day of God’s judgment is coming. However, that will not stop it from happening. It will keep me from being prepared when it does arrive. When I believe what the Bible says I can look forward to the place where righteousness resides. God has promised new heavens and a new earth. It will not be this earth transformed. It will be a new place that God has prepared for those who love him and obey him. Peter then writes to his readers to strive to be at peace as we wait. It is not something that comes easily. In the first place, we do not like to wait for anything. We live in a time where instant gratification is the norm. I want it and I want it now. The verb strive suggests that it takes effort. Some things do not just happen. Peter also writes to be without spot or blemish when we come into his presence. For the person who has been washed in Christ’s blood through baptism, it is still necessary to continue in his teaching. I cannot go through the act and then return to my former way of life. Here again, an effort must be made. An effort must be made to grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus so that we are not led astray by false teachers who do not teach the truth according to the scriptures. Only then can I have peace in the midst of a corrupt world.