New International Version

2 Peter 3

The Day of the Lord

1Dear friends, this is now my second letter to you. I have written both of them as reminders to stimulate you to wholesome thinking. I want you to recall the words spoken in the past by the holy prophets and the command given by our Lord and Savior through your apostles.

Above all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our ancestors died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.” But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens came into being and the earth was formed out of water and by water. By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed. By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.

But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything done in it will be laid bare.[a]

11 Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives 12 as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming.[b] That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. 13 But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells.

14 So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him. 15 Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him. 16 He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.

17 Therefore, dear friends, since you have been forewarned, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless and fall from your secure position. 18 But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen.

Footnotes

  1. 2 Peter 3:10 Some manuscripts be burned up
  2. 2 Peter 3:12 Or as you wait eagerly for the day of God to come

New International Reader's Version

2 Peter 3

The Day of the Lord

1Dear friends, this is now my second letter to you. I have written both of them as reminders. I want to encourage you to think in a way that is pure. I want you to remember the words the holy prophets spoke in the past. Remember the command our Lord and Savior gave through your apostles.

Most of all, here is what you must understand. In the last days people will make fun of the truth. They will laugh at it. They will follow their own evil desires. They will say, “Where is this ‘return’ he promised? Everything goes on in the same way it has since our people of long ago died. In fact, it has continued this way since God first created everything.” Long ago, God’s word brought the heavens into being. His word separated the earth from the waters. And the waters surrounded it. But these people forget things like that on purpose. The waters also flooded the world of that time. And so they destroyed the world. By God’s word the heavens and earth of today are being reserved for fire. They are being kept for the day when God will judge. Then ungodly people will be destroyed.

Dear friends, here is one thing you must not forget. With the Lord a day is like a thousand years. And a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow to keep his promise. He is not slow in the way some people understand it. Instead, he is patient with you. He doesn’t want anyone to be destroyed. Instead, he wants all people to turn away from their sins.

10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar. Fire will destroy everything in them. God will judge the earth and everything done in it.

11 So everything will be destroyed in this way. And what kind of people should you be? You should lead holy and godly lives. 12 Live like this as you look forward to the day of God. Living like this will make the day come more quickly. On that day fire will destroy the heavens. Its heat will melt everything in them. 13 But we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth. Godliness will live there. All this is in keeping with God’s promise.

14 Dear friends, I know you are looking forward to this. So try your best to be found pure and without blame. Be at peace with God. 15 Remember that while our Lord is waiting patiently to return, people are being saved. Our dear brother Paul also wrote to you about this. God made him wise to write as he did. 16 Paul writes the same way in all his letters. He speaks about what I have just told you. His letters include some things that are hard to understand. People who don’t know better and aren’t firm in the faith twist what he says. They twist the other Scriptures too. So they will be destroyed.

17 Dear friends, you have already been warned about this. So be on your guard. Then you won’t be led astray by people who don’t obey the law. Instead, you will remain safe. 18 Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Glory belongs to him both now and forever. Amen.