Peter knew that men must be told the truth about themselves, about God, and especially about the love of Christ; otherwise, they would destroy their lives and forever be separated from God because of their sins. Peter could not remain silent.
He “testified and exhorted” his audience. The word exhorted means to “call upon, admonish, beg, instruct, encourage, or teach.” He was compelled to use every oral expression possible to persuade his audience to turn to Jesus. Paul wrote of his compelling urgency to speak: “Since we have such hope, we use great boldness of speech” (2 Cor 3:12). Do we really believe the gospel is the only hope for the lost?
Peter challenged his audience to “urgently decide to save yourself,” not in the sense that they could effect their own salvation, but that individually each one must decide whose side they are on: the side of their perverse generation, with all its customs, vices, and self–seeking sensualities, or the side of God in Jesus Christ.
Paul wrote to all who would follow Christ, “Be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked [the same Greek word as our text] and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life” (Phil 2:15–-16a).
Being saved from a “perverse generation” does not mean we must be isolated. It means we should be strengthened internally so that the generation in which we live does not affect us; rather, we should affect it, pointing it to the Savior.
“My heart aches for the disinterest in and rebellion against Your word in my generation. Keep me faithful to You today.”