on 2-peter 2 :10
But chiefly them that walk - That is, God will in the most signal manner punish them that walk after the flesh - addict themselves to sodomitical practices, and the lust of pollution; probably alluding to those most abominable practices where men abuse themselves and abuse one another.
Despise government - They brave the power and authority of the civil magistrate, practising their abominations so as to keep out of the reach of the letter of the law; and they speak evil of dignities - they blaspheme civil government, they abhor the restraints laid upon men by the laws, and would wish all governments destroyed that they might live as they list.
Presumptuous are they - Τολμηται· They are bold and daring, headstrong, regardless of fear.
Self-willed - Αυθαδεις· Self-sufficient; presuming on themselves; following their own opinions, which no authority can induce them to relinquish.
Are not afraid to speak evil of dignities - They are lawless and disobedient, spurn all human authority, and speak contemptuously of all legal and civil jurisdiction. Those in general despise governments, and speak evil of dignities, who wish to be under no control, that they may act as freebooters in the community.
on 2-peter 2 :10
But chiefly - That is, it may be presumed that the principles just laid down would be applicable in an eminent degree to such persons as he proceeds to designate.
That walk after the flesh - That live for the indulgence of their carnal appetites. Notes, Romans 8:1.
In the lust of uncleanness - In polluted pleasures. Compare the notes at 2 Peter 2:2.
And despise government - Margin: "dominion." That is, they regard all government in the state, the church, and the family, as an evil. Advocates for unbridled freedom of all sorts; declaimers on liberty and on the evils of oppression; defenders of what they regard as the rights of injured man, and yet secretly themselves lusting for the exercise of the very power which they would deny to others - they make no just distinctions about what constitutes true freedom, and in their zeal array themselves against government in all forms. No topic of declamation would be more popular than this, and from none would they hope to secure more followers; for if they could succeed in removing all respect for the just restraints of law, the way would be open for the accomplishment of their own purposes, in setting up a dominion ever the minds of others. It is a common result of such views, that men of this description become impatient of the government of God himself, and seek to throw off all authority, and to live in the unrestrained indulgence of their vicious propensities.
Presumptuous are they - Τολμηταὶ Tolmētai - daring, bold, audacious, presumptuous men.
Self-willed - αὐθάδεις authadeis. See the notes at Titus 1:7.
They are not afraid to speak evil of dignities - The word rendered "dignities" here, (δόξας doxas,) means properly honor, glory, splendor; then that which is fitted to inspire respect; that which is dignified or exalted. It is applied here to men of exalted rank; and the meaning is, that they did not regard rank, or station, or office - thus violating the plainest rules of propriety and of religion. See the notes at Acts 23:4-5. Jude, between whose language and that of Peter in this chapter there is a remarkable resemblance, has expressed this more fully. He says, 2 Peter 2:8, "These filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities." It is one of the effects of religion to produce respect for superiors; but when men are self-willed, and when they purpose to give indulgence to corrupt propensities, it is natural for them to dislike all government. Accordingly, it is by no means an unfrequent effect of certain forms of error to lead men to speak disrespectfully of those in authority, and to attempt to throw off all the restraints of law. It is a very certain indication that men hold wrong opinions when they show disrespect to those in authority, and despise the restraints of law.
on 2-peter 2 :10
2:10 Chiefly them that walk after the flesh - Corrupt nature; particularly in the lust of uncleanness. And despise government - The authority of their governors. Dignities - Persons in authority.