#TuesdayDevotion: 2 Peter 2:12-21
Peter tells us not to be a dog returning to its vomit. Peter talks about bad people in the church. Some of these bad people claimed to be leaders. Peter appears to be struggling to stop the church being spoiled. They came into the church but wanted the world. Peter says they were greedy and were experts in seducing people. They wanted money, sexual immorality, they were gluttons, thinking they were so spiritually superior they could make judgments about angelic beings they knew nothing about. See 2 Peter 2:10-11.
In verse 12 he says: “They are like unreasoning animals, creatures of instinct, born only to be caught and destroyed, and like animals they too will perish.” Peter describes them in verse 17 as “springs without water.”
Have you met Christians who claim to be alive and spiritually mature, who claim to be Spirit filled and they say many things and don’t follow through? They join ministries but are not faithful, they make excuses. They want people to give them money, attention, praise. They want followers to boost their egos. They are lacking in concern for God’s approval. Jesus says in John 5:44: “How can you believe since you accept glory from one another but do not seek the glory that comes from the only God?”
We need to take God’s approval seriously. If our ambitions are all worldly, if we only seek more status, money, or sexual immorality, we displease God. James in chapter 4 verse 4 says we stop being His friend and become His enemy when we choose such worldly ambitions. In 1 Peter 4:2 he exhorts us not to live our lives for evil human desires but rather for the will of God.
Are there desires in your life contrary to the will of God? Take a few moments to think how you spend your time. Is it more for evil human desires, or for the will of God? Consider your thoughts, words and deeds that indicate your choices.
Peter says in verse 12 these evil people will be paid back with harm for the harm they have done. Choosing sinful lusts will result in punishment from God. Galatians 6:6 says: “Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.” In 1 Peter 2:24 we are reminded about Jesus: “He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed.’
God takes sins very seriously. Jesus had to sacrifice Himself to cancel our sins and cancel the punishment in our lives for sins. If we allow ourselves to be hardened by sins’ deceitfulness and do not repent, we should consider verses 20-21 of this passage afresh: “If they have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and are again entangled in it and are overcome, they are worse off at the end than they were at the beginning. 21 It would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than to have known it and then to turn their backs on the sacred command that was passed on to them.”
Peter states in verse 22, our sins appear to God as repulsive as a dog returning to its vomit. This is a disgusting metaphor for sin. It is not nice considering this mental picture. Peter is talking about Christians going back to sinful behaviour that they already have been set free from in Christ.
Suggested prayer: Father God, may I seek Your approval over the approval of others. May You help me to live by Your Spirit and not according to the sinful nature. Forgive me for the times and ways I have lived according to the flesh. Help me to change my mind and live from today by Your Holy Spirit. Lead me in prayer, worship and meditation on the word of God. May I grow in the fruit of the Spirit for the glory of Your Name. Amen.