2 Peter 2* Believers are cautioned against false teachers, and thecertainty of their punishment shown from examples. (1-9) Anaccount of these seducers, as exceedingly wicked. (10-16) But asmaking high pretences to liberty and purity. (17-22)1-9 Though the way of error is a hurtful way, many are alwaysready to walk therein. Let us take care we give no occasion tothe enemy to blaspheme the holy name whereby we are called, orto speak evil of the way of salvation by Jesus Christ, who isthe Way, the Truth, and the Life. These seducers used feignedwords, they deceived the hearts of their followers. Such arecondemned already, and the wrath of God abides upon them. God'susual method of proceeding is shown by examples. Angels werecast down from all their glory and dignity, for theirdisobedience. If creatures sin, even in heaven, they must sufferin hell. Sin is the work of darkness, and darkness is the wagesof sin. See how God dealt with the old world. The number ofoffenders no more procures favour, than their quality. If thesin be universal, the punishment shall likewise extend to all.If in a fruitful soil the people abound in sin, God can at onceturn a fruitful land into barrenness, and a well-watered countryinto ashes. No plans or politics can keep off judgments from asinful people. He who keeps fire and water from hurting hispeople, #Isa 43:2|, can make either destroy his enemies; theyare never safe. When God sends destruction on the ungodly, hecommands deliverance for the righteous. In bad company we cannotbut get either guilt or grief. Let the sins of others betroubles to us. Yet it is possible for the children of the Lord,living among the most profane, to retain their integrity; therebeing more power in the grace of Christ, and his dwelling inthem, than in the temptations of Satan, or the example of thewicked, with all their terrors or allurements. In our intentionsand inclinations to commit sin, we meet with strangehinderances, if we mark them When we intend mischief, God sendsmany stops to hinder us, as if to say, Take heed what you do.His wisdom and power will surely effect the purposes of hislove, and the engagements of his truth; while wicked men oftenescape suffering here, because they are kept to the day ofjudgment, to be punished with the devil and his angels. 10-16 Impure seducers and their abandoned followers, givethemselves up to their own fleshly minds. Refusing to bringevery thought to the obedience of Christ, they act against God'srighteous precepts. They walk after the flesh, they go on insinful courses, and increase to greater degrees of impurity andwickedness. They also despise those whom God has set inauthority over them, and requires them to honour. Outwardtemporal good things are the wages sinners expect and promisethemselves. And none have more cause to tremble, than those whoare bold to gratify their sinful lusts, by presuming on theDivine grace and mercy. Many such there have been, and are, whospeak lightly of the restraints of God's law, and deemthemselves freed from obligations to obey it. Let Christiansstand at a distance from such. 17-22 The word of truth is the water of life, which refreshesthe souls that receive it; but deceivers spread and promoteerror, and are set forth as empty, because there is no truth inthem. As clouds hinder the light of the sun, so do these darkencounsel by words wherein there is no truth. Seeing that thesemen increase darkness in this world, it is very just that themist ofdarkness should be their portion in the next. In themidst of their talk of liberty, these men are the vilest slaves;their own lusts gain a complete victory over them, and they areactually in bondage. When men are entangled, they are easilyovercome; therefore Christians should keep close to the word ofGod, and watch against all who seek to bewilder them. A state ofapostacy is worse than a state of ignorance. To bring an evilreport upon the good way of God, and a false charge against theway of truth, must expose to the heaviest condemnation. Howdreadful is the state here described! Yet though such a case isdeplorable, it is not utterly hopeless; the leper may be madeclean, and even the dead may be raised. Is thy backsliding agrief to thee? Believe in the Lord Jesus, and thou shalt besaved.
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