(2 Peter 3:17-18 ESV)
Many of us, in the church today, are oblivious to what’s going on around us. We live in our own little bubble, paying little attention to the happenings of the world. We live in our own little world, remaining ignorant of the events and trends in the Christian Church as a whole.
This was true of me in my younger days. I grew up in a conservative Lutheran church. I grew up with a Bible-believing pastor. And, because this was all I knew, I assumed every other Lutheran church was the same. I was surprised to find out, as the ELCA merger was preparing to take place, that this wasn’t the case.
I was surprised to learn there are churches who do not believe that the Bible is inerrant and infallible. I was surprised to learn there are churches who approve of things that the Bible defines as sin. And I was even more surprised to learn that there are many people who have accepted the false teaching being fed to them.
In the prior verses, Peter stated that the ignorant and unstable twisted the Scriptures to their own destruction. And this is what he’s referring to as he makes the above statement. Knowing this, knowing that some twist the Scriptures, we must take care.
We must take care that we aren’t carried away with error of lawless people. If we aren’t aware of the false teaching that’s being proclaimed, we may very well get sucked into believing it. If we aren’t aware of what’s going on, we may end up accepting the twisted doctrine of the ignorant and unstable.
According to Peter, we must know this, we must be aware of this, to ensure that we don’t lose our own stability. If we get sucked into the twisted doctrine being proclaimed, if we come to accept it, we’ll receive the fate of those who proclaimed it to us. Just as those who proclaim it do so to their own destruction, so will we receive it.
As believers, we cannot stick our head in the sand. We cannot remain ignorant of what is going on within the wider church. We must be aware that we might stand firm in the face of false teaching.
Along with being aware of the false doctrine being proclaimed, we must also continue to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord. We must continue to be fed by the Word of God that our faith might flourish. We must do so that we might receive each blessing he's prepared for us.