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What does "with the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day" mean in context?


2 Peter 3:8

ESV - 8 But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

Clarify Share Report Asked December 11 2014 Tot Tito Dulay Lim

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20150118 134202 Faustino Ngombo Bible/Theology student; IT Technician
First, it is important to understand the context, as you well asked: 
- In this verse, or in the context, the apostle Peter was addressing the saints to whom he wrote regarding the 2nd coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, so that they would be aware of it, and not regard it as a ''long awaiting'' promise, so to say; therefore, he starts with the words: ''but do not overlook this one fact...'', thus helping them to maintain the awareness, and not slumber in their minds. The following verse agrees with this explanation.

Now, to answer the question:
- "With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day" means that all time is as nothing before Him, because in the presence as in the nature of God, all is eternity; therefore nothing is long, nothing short, before Him. Actually, to Him, time itself does not have the same effect that it has upon us (see also Psalms 90:4). He is longsuffering (patient), where as we do not have this embedded in us, except as a fruit of the Spirit (see Galatians 5:22, where patience/longsuffering as a fruit is mentioned). 

So, this helps us to remain attentive, and know that He shall come at a time which we do not expect (Luke 12:40).

I hope this was helpful.

Grace and peace.

December 11 2014 5 responses Vote Up Share Report

Andy  3 photo Andy Mangus I am a Christian since October 1979 & devoted truth seeker.
To me, my simplistic answer would be this: First, I begin by 'understanding that God is omnipotent, omnipresent and timeless." What does this mean? It is to understand that God is outside the concept of what we call 'TIME'. God is the Great I AM! He is "Everlasting to Everlasting" I AM!. He is "all powerful Creator...I am." He is "the breath of life...I am" He is "our Redeemer... I am" He is "the One who loves us beyond understanding (God in 3 persons)...I am" He is "the just God of all Justice...I am" He is our eternal hope of joy that is everlasting to everlasting." Most simply, "HE IS GOD". TIme doesn't apply to GOD! " God created 'time' for mankind. Remember: Man has a beginning at conception(you and I) and Adam had a beginning when God "formed him from the soil of the earth and named him Adam. Remember: "for all things shall pass away, for we were made of dust and to dust we shall return!" Only He is ETERNAL! "a thousand years is like a day", is simply an intentional sentence to give us a glimpse into understanding "time and GOD" And, remind ourselves that time itself had a beginning! GOD is eternal and "has always and always will". God is "I AM. --Andy--

April 19 2016 1 response Vote Up Share Report

My picture Jack Gutknecht ABC/DTS graduate, guitar music ministry Baptist church
Concerning the delay of Christ's return, Peter is speaking of 2 things (2 Pet. 3:8-9), the timelessness of God and the tenderness of God.

The timelessness of God is spoken of in 2 Peter 3:8. 

New Living Translation (NLT)
8 "But you must not forget this one thing, dear friends: A day is like a thousand years to the Lord, and a thousand years is like a day,"

A day to him is as a thousand years, and a thousand years is as a day. God is not limited by time the way we are, nor does He measure it according to man’s standards. While God works in time, He is not limited by time. 

But the tenderness of God is in the context, too: See 2 Peter 3:9. 

"The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent."

He is patient, not wanting anyone to perish. To believers, Peter now says that the seeming delay of Christ's return is for the purpose of allowing more people repent. 

A beautiful song that goes along with this is 

November 08 2020 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

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