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Answers to So-called Arminian Verses

6. 2Pe 3:9 - "The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance."

A. Is this verse teaching that God is not willing that anyone goes to hell, and that He wants everyone to repent so that they will be spared eternal damnation?

i. No; first of all this verse doesn't say anything about going to hell or eternal damnation.

ii. Secondly, God is willing that all of the reprobate go to hell because that is the wages of their sin (Rom 6:23; 2Th 1:7-9; Rev 20:12-15).

a. Rom 9:21 - Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?

b. Rom 9:22 - What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction:

iii. Thirdly, repentance is a good work (Mat 12:41 c/w Jonah 3:10) which the reprobate cannot do (Rom 3:10-12; Jer 13:23); and even if they could, it would not save them eternally because eternal salvation is not of works (2Ti 1:9; Tit 3:5).

B. God is longsuffering toward the elect, and He is not willing that any of them should perish.

i. Peter said that God is longsuffering to us-ward (2Pe 3:9).

ii. Us-ward adv. - to usward, = toward us

iii. The "us" were Peter and those to whom he was writing who had "obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ" (2Pe 1:1).

a. Believers in Jesus Christ have eternal life (Joh 6:47).

b. Therefore, the people to whom Peter wrote had eternal life.

iv. The "us" to whom Peter wrote were the elect (2Pe 1:10).

a. All of the elect will be eternally glorified (Rom 8:29-30).

b. Therefore, the people to whom Peter wrote would all be glorified in heaven.

v. The "us" to whom Peter wrote were the same people that he wrote the first epistle to who were the elect who were born again (2Pe 3:1 c/w 1Pe 1:2-3).

a. The elect who have eternal life (are born again) cannot lose it (Joh 10:28).

b. Therefore, the people to whom Peter wrote could not lose their eternal life.

vi. Therefore, Peter was writing to elect, born again believers who had eternal life and could not lose it, and telling them that God was longsuffering towards them and not willing that any of them should perish, but that they should come to repentance.

C. The perishing is physical and temporal, not spiritual and eternal.

i. Perish v. - 1. a. intr. To come to a violent, sudden, or untimely end; to suffer destruction; to lose its life, cease to exist, be cut off.

ii. To perish can refer to eternal perishing (Joh 3:16; 1Co 1:18; 2Co 2:15).

iii. To perish can also refer to temporal or physical perishing.

a. Mat 8:25 - And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish.

b. Mat 26:52 - ... all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.

iv. Since it was proven in the previous section that those to whom Peter was writing were already in possession of eternal life and they would never perish eternally (Joh 10:28), Peter was therefore saying that God was not willing that they would perish temporally or physically.

D. God is not willing that any of His elect perish (die physically for their sins).

i. God has no pleasure in the death of His people and admonishes them to turn from their evil ways so that they will live (Eze 18:23,30-32; Eze 33:11).

ii. Jesus seeks His lost sheep because it's not God's will that any of them should perish (Mat 18:11-14).

iii. God is longsuffering towards His people, even when they are rebellious towards Him (Psa 78:37-39).

E. Repentance will save the elect from temporal perishing.

i. God's elect can suffer physical death (perishing) for sin (Act 5:1-10; 1Co 11:29-30).

ii. God's elect can perish (die) physically if they don't repent of their sins (Luk 13:1-5; Job 36:7-12).

iii. God is longsuffering towards His elect and gives them a space of repentance before cutting them off (Luk 13:6-9).

iv. Repentance will save a person from death (Jam 5:19-20; Job 33:27-30).

v. This is precisely what Peter was warning the brethren about in 2Pe 3:9.