Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


2 Peter 3:11

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

All these things shall be dissolved - They will all be separated, all decomposed; but none of them destroyed. And as they are the original matter out of which God formed the terraqueous globe, consequently they may enter again into the composition of a new system; and therefore the apostle says, 2 Peter 3:13; : we look for new heavens and a new earth - the others being decomposed, a new system is to be formed out of their materials. There is a wonderful philosophic propriety in the words of the apostle in describing this most awful event.

What manner of persons ought ye to be - Some put the note of interrogation at the end of this clause, and join the remaining part with the 12th verse, thus: Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be? By holy conversation and godliness, expecting and earnestly desiring the coming of the day of God, etc. Only those who walk in holiness, who live a godly and useful life, can contemplate this most awful time with joy.

The word σπευδοντας, which we translate hasting unto, should be tendered earnestly desiring, or wishing for; which is a frequent meaning of the word in the best Greek writers.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved - Since this is an undoubted truth.

What manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness - In holy conduct and piety. That is, this fact ought to be allowed to exert a deep and abiding influence on us, to induce us to lead holy lives. We should feel that there is nothing permanent on the earth that this is not our abiding home; and that our great interests are in another world. We should be serious, humble, and prayerful; and should make it our great object to be prepared for the solemn scenes through which we are soon to pass. An habitual contemplation of the truth, that all that we see is soon to pass away, would produce a most salutary effect on the mind. It would make us serious. It would repress ambition. It would lead us not to desire to accumulate what must so soon be destroyed. It would prompt us to lay up our treasures in heaven. It would cause us to ask with deep earnestness whether we are prepared for these amazing scenes, should they suddenly burst upon us.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
From the doctrine of Christ's second coming, we are exhorted to purity and godliness. This is the effect of real knowledge. Very exact and universal holiness is enjoined, not resting in any low measure or degree. True Christians look for new heavens and a new earth; freed from the vanity to which things present are subject, and the sin they are polluted with. Those only who are clothed with the righteousness of Christ, and sanctified by the Holy Ghost, shall be admitted to dwell in this holy place. He is faithful, who has promised. Those, whose sins are pardoned, and their peace made with God, are the only safe and happy people; therefore follow after peace, and that with all men; follow after holiness as well as peace. Never expect to be found at that day of God in peace, if you are lazy and idle in this your day, in which we must finish the work given us to do. Only the diligent Christian will be the happy Christian in the day of the Lord. Our Lord will suddenly come to us, or shortly call us to him; and shall he find us idle? Learn to make a right use of the patience of our Lord, who as yet delays his coming. Proud, carnal, and corrupt men, seek to wrest some things into a seeming agreement with their wicked doctrines. But this is no reason why St. Paul's epistles, or any other part of the Scriptures, should be laid aside; for men, left to themselves, pervert every gift of God. Then let us seek to have our minds prepared for receiving things hard to be understood, by putting in practice things which are more easy to be understood. But there must be self-denial and suspicion of ourselves, and submission to the authority of Christ Jesus, before we can heartily receive all the truths of the gospel, therefore we are in great danger of rejecting the truth. And whatever opinions and thoughts of men are not according to the law of God, and warranted by it, the believer disclaims and abhors. Those who are led away by error, fall from their own stedfastness. And that we may avoid being led away, we must seek to grow in all grace, in faith, and virtue, and knowledge. Labour to know Christ more clearly, and more fully; to know him so as to be more like him, and to love him better. This is the knowledge of Christ, which the apostle Paul reached after, and desired to attain; and those who taste this effect of the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, will, upon receiving such grace from him, give thanks and praise him, and join in ascribing glory to him now, in the full assurance of doing the same hereafter, for ever.
Ellen G. White
Testimonies for the Church, vol. 5, 547

Every soul who truly believes the truth will have corresponding works. All will be earnest and solemn, and unwearied in their efforts to win souls to Christ. If the truth is first planted deep in their own souls, then they will seek to plant it in the hearts of others. The truth is kept altogether too much in the outer court. Bring it into the inner temple of the soul, enthrone it in the heart, and let it control the life. The word of God should be studied and obeyed, then the heart will find rest and peace and joy, and the aspirations will tend heavenward; but when truth is kept apart from the life, in the outer court, the heart is not warmed with the glowing fire of God's goodness. 5T 547.1

The religion of Jesus is, by many, reserved for certain days, or certain occasions, and at other times is laid aside and neglected. The abiding principle of truth is not merely for a few hours on the Sabbath, or for a few acts of charity, but it is to be brought into the heart, refining and sanctifying the character. If there is a moment when man is safe without this special light and strength from heaven, then he may dispense with the truth of God. The Bible, God's pure, holy word, must be his counselor and guide, the controlling power of his life. It gives forth its lessons to us if we will take them to heart. 5T 547.2

Abraham was a man favored of God. The Lord said: “I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment.” Abraham was honored of God because he cultivated home religion and caused the fear of the Lord to pervade his whole household. It is God who says: “I know him, that he will command”—there will be no betraying of sacred trust on his part, no yielding to anyone but God; there is a law, and Abraham will keep it; no blind affection will cloud his sense of right and interfere between God and the souls of his children; that kind of indulgence which is the veriest cruelty will not lead Abraham astray. 5T 547.3

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Ellen G. White
Testimonies on Sexual Behavior, Adultery, and Divorce, 107.1

Spotless and Undefiled Until the End—Sinful corruptions! How sinful at any time, but how much more so now, when standing upon the very borders of the eternal world! I speak to my people. If you draw close to Jesus and seek to adorn your profession by a well-ordered life and godly conversation, your feet will be kept from straying into forbidden paths. If you will only watch, continually watch, unto prayer; if you will do everything as if you were in the immediate presence of God, you will be saved from yielding to temptation and may hope to be kept pure, spotless, and undefiled unto the end. TSB 107.1

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Ellen G. White
Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, 281

Every human being has been bought with a price, and as God's heritage he has certain rights, of which no one should deprive him. The Lord will not accept service from those who practice double-dealing. The least advantage gained in this way will dishonor God and the truth. Those who possess Bible religion will do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with their God. These are the lines drawn by the God of justice on this matter. TM 281.1

Again I would urge that living faith in God be cultivated. There are those who, though thought to be serving God, are fast becoming girded about with infidelity. To them crooked paths seem straight; they are living in continual violation of God's truth; corrupt principles are interwoven into their life practice, and wherever they go they sow seeds of evil. In the place of leading others to Christ their influence causes them to question and doubt. They unsettle minds in the truth by entering into speculative theories which draw them away from the truth. They help to forge the fetters of doubt and unbelief, faultfinding and accusing; and souls stumble over them to perdition. The blood of souls will be upon those who, while they profess to be in the service of God, are doing the work of His enemy. TM 281.2

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Ellen G. White
Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, 420

“For the Lord shall rise up as in Mount Perazim, He shall be wroth as in the valley of Gibeon, that He may do His work, His strange work; and bring to pass His act, His strange act. Now therefore be ye not mockers, lest your bands be made strong: for I have heard from the Lord God of hosts a consumption, even determined upon the whole earth.” Read Deuteronomy 7:6. Read the whole chapter, also chapters 1 and 8. These were presented to me as the words of the Lord. These things are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come. TM 420.1

We are to have only those connected with our institutions who will hear the word of the Lord and appreciate and obey His voice. When a man will plead and urge to have his mind and his judgment to be supreme in any one of our institutions, you can have no greater evidence that that man does not know himself and is not qualified to manage. He will make mistakes and injure rather than restore. He does not know what responsibilities are involved in his relation to God or to his fellowmen. TM 420.2

“Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be? Those who walk humbly with God will not be striving to obtain greater responsibilities, but will consider that they have a special work to do, and will be faithful to their duty. In our institutions, great good can be done in educating by precept and example, in economy in all lines. If you, my brother, had learned in the school of Christ to be meek and lowly in heart, you would always stand on vantage ground. You have not an evenly balanced character. You cannot safely put confidence in your own judgment in all things. Man's way is to devise and scheme; God implants a principle. Man is striving to make duty soft and accommodating to his own natural character; but life is a battlefield; life is a race which he has to run if he is victor.... TM 420.3

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