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2 Peter 3:11 - Exposition

Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved; rather, seeing that all these things are being dissolved. The participle is present, and implies the certainty of the event foretold, and, perhaps, also that the germs of that coming dissolution are already in being, that the forces which are ultimately to bring about the final catastrophe are even now at work. Some of the better manuscripts read, instead of οὖν , then, οὕτως , thus: "seeing that all these things are thus being dissolved." What manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness? The Greek word for "what manner of persons" means literally, "of what country;" it seems to point to the great truth that God's people are fellow-citizens of the saints, that the commonwealth of which they are citizens is in heaven. The word for "to be" is the emphatic ὑπάρχειν , which denotes original, essential, continuous being. (On the word for "conversation" ( ἀναστροφαῖς , behaviour, conduct), see note on 1 Peter 1:15 .) Both this noun and the following are plural in the Greek, and therefore mean "in all aspects and forms of holy conduct and godliness." Some commentators connect these last words, "in all holy conversation and godliness," with the next verse: "looking in all holy conversation,'' etc. Some, again, understand this verse as asking a question, which is answered in the next; but the Greek word for "what manner of persons" ( ποταπός ) seems to be used in the New Testament as an exclamation only, not interrogatively.

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