2 Peter 3:9

The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance

From a similar question in Christianity SE

It's true that some Calvinists take a different approach and suggest that "all" in 2 Peter 3:9 refers only to Christians

So.... God speaks to the people whom He knows that they are Jesus believers :
I am patient with you.
I don't want anyone from you to perish.
I want everyone from you to come to repentance.

My question is: How come God doesn't want Jesus believers to perish and God wants Jesus believers to come to repentance? Aren't Jesus believers already a repented people (because elected) then impossible to perish?

  • 2
    hey, kudos to you - this is a much much better question than your last few efforts Commented Oct 23, 2017 at 18:32
  • Ditto. The "thank you" at the end of each one is also super courteous, especially for the Internet.
    – Zenon
    Commented Oct 23, 2017 at 22:16
  • Why do you think elect people don't need to repent? They're still sinners! They're still God's enemies until they repent in faith and are reconciled to him!
    – curiousdannii
    Commented Oct 23, 2017 at 23:48
  • @curiousdannii wrote : [Why do you think elect people don't need to repent?] ---> it's not what I'm thinking :). God is talking to a bunch of people whom He himself admitted that they are Jesus Believers. The question raise because I thought the chronology is : (1) God made his elected one to repent in faith, (2) reconciled to God, (3) Jesus Believer. You wrote [They're still God's enemies] ---> I don't know that [Jesus Believers are still God's enemies]. This is something new to me and quite surprising :).
    – karma
    Commented Oct 24, 2017 at 10:56

1 Answer 1


As the answer you mentioned suggests, the majority of Calvinists and that which is taught by the reputable Wayne Grudem in his Systematic Theology and many others, is that, in 2 Peter 3:9, "all" means "all", and not just "Jesus believers." The verse is definitely referring to salvation, so it is not talking about the heart and mindset of continual repentance that we should all have about all sin.

It would not make sense for this verse if all was referring to Jesus believers. That seems superfluous, and like you said they are not in danger of perishing, so to speak.

However, Calvinists could say that verse is referring to the elect, prior to salvation. Because the elect, prior to salvation, would still need to repent and be saved from perishing, but they are the elect from eternity past, so the title of "elect" would be accurate. This is how that interpretation is at least coherent but doesn't adequately explain the use of the term "all" or "everyone" without hermeneutical gymnastics.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .