Cruelty and Violence
Science and History
"Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things
continue as they were from the beginning of the creation." -- 2 Peter 3:4
Second Peter for Skeptics
Although this epistle claims to have been written by Peter, he
was almost certainly not its author. It was written around 90-100 CE, long after Peter's death. The late date
is suspected because: verses 3:3-4 make excuses for the failure of the expected second coming of Christ;
the author refers to "all of the letters of Paul" in a way that indicates that Paul's epistles were already considered
equal to "the other scriptures;" and the epistle depends upon the letter of Jude, which is thought to have been written around
There's some embarrassing stuff in Second Peter. Noah is a "preacher of righteousness" (2:5), Lot is "a just and righteous man" (2:7-8), God plans
to burn up the entire earth (3:10), and believers were already making excuses for Jesus' non-return 1900 years ago (3:4-8).
Here are the highlights.
- "No prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation." That's just your interpretation. 1:20
- "There shall be false teachers among you, who ... shall bring in damnable heresies ... and bring upon themselves swift destruction ...
Their damnation slumbereth not." 2:1-3
- "God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness." 2:4
- "Noah ... a preacher of righteousness."
God drowned everyone on earth except for Noah [the first drunken "preacher of righteousness" (see Gen.9:20-25)] and his family.
- "Turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes" 2:6
- Lot, who in Gen.19:8 offers his two virgin daughters to a crowd of angel rapers and
later gets drunk and impregnates them (19:30-38), is a "just" and "righteous man."
- God knows how to punish those that lust or "despise government." (Watch out Teabaggers!) 2:9-14
- The author believes the story in Numbers (22:28-30)
about the talking ass. 2:16
- Those who lose their faith are like dogs that eat their own vomit. 2:22
- The author of 2 Peter is aware of the failed expectations of early believers. He knows that Jesus, who was
supposed to come soon, didn't come at all. Many have begun to ask, "Where is the promise of his coming?" So he makes up the
"one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day." Believers have been using it ever since.
- God will set the entire earth on fire so that he can burn non-believers to death. 3:7
- When Jesus finally does come, the heavens will "pass away with a great noise" and the earth will "be burnt up." 3:10
- Paul's epistles are hard to understand; those who try to understand them, as with the other scriptures,
do so "unto their own destruction." 3:16