Lesson Info:

Lesson 12 Winter Quarter
Lesson Text:  2 Peter 1:3-14
Golden Text:  2 Peter 1:8

Listen to Today’s Lesson


The penultimate lesson of this quarter touches on a thought that I have focused on recently – our return to holiness and righteousness.  As we saw in the second unit of lessons, the Lord has reconciled us unto Himself.  Now, because we have chosen to believe and live by faith in Christ, we live under grace.  In His grace, we are being transformed from our old man and into a new creature that is, again, holy and righteousness; we are obtaining our godliness.

Our Godliness

As we take a look at our lesson this week, we will see Peter speak to how God’s divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness.  How was life and godliness given to us?

Given by God

I can tell you for a certainty that nobody can make themselves holy and righteous by their own might.  There are many people that believe their wealth should be glorified by all of those around them.  Seriously, I think back to old kings like Nebuchadnezzar who had big images built of themselves so that people could praise and worship their “greatness”.

The only way that you and I can become righteous is if the Lord makes us righteous.  The only power that we have in “making ourselves righteous” is our choice to be obedient in the way of the Lord.  Obedience leads to righteousness and on the opposite side, disobedience leads to eternal suffering.

So, Peter tells us in our opening verse that knowledge of Him (God) and His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness (v.3).  Let’s be clear, Peter is saying that we can only become holy and righteous through the Lord.  Trying to become righteous any other way is futile and would only lead to a false self-righteousness.

As you heard me say all of January, the Lord wants you to become holy and righteous!  You see, God wants to dwell with you and the only that He can dwell with you is if you are holy and righteous.

God’s desire for mankind has always been that we be just like Him; this is why God created us in His image and likeness (Gen. 1:26).  God created us to be perfect.  Sin, as we know, ruined that as Adam and Eve both chose to disobey God in the garden.  Yet, even after their disobedience in the garden, God made a promise to Himself to restore man back to the image and likeness we were created in.

Promised by God

Peter touches on the promises that were made by the Lord and calls them exceedingly great and precious (v.4).  In the garden, God promised that Satan would be defeated by Him who is divine (Gen. 3:14-15).  Him who is divine came to our world from eternity, in the flesh, and also made a promise to mankind.  Christ promised that all who believe in Him would not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16).

As we know, God is certainly faithful and keeps His promises.  Christ defeated Satan on the cross and reconciled all things unto Him (2 Cor. 5:18).  So, as God promised, the opportunity is there today for all people to regain the form mankind once had.  All it takes for us to take on our godliness – our holiness and righteousness – is for us to have faith.  As Peter said, we escape the corruption that is in the world through our genuine faith.

Growing in Faith

Now, the thing about obtaining godliness is that it takes a journey.  Yes, I can say all day long that we must have faith but the truth of the matter is that having faith is a journey in itself.  A lot of us get to thinking that faith is simply about saying that we believe, but faith is a lot more than this.

Encouraged to add to faith

Faith, we should understand, is action – it is living.  James asked, “What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works?  Can faith save him (Jas. 2:14)?”  James then stated, “Someone will say, ‘You have faith, and I have works.’  Show me your faith without works, and I will show you my faith by my works (Jas. 2:18).”

What James was saying reminds me of the concept that essentially states you can’t necessarily take people only by their words, but we must take in account their actions as well.  As the saying goes, actions speak louder than words.  James concluded that faith without works is dead (Jas. 2:20,26).

James was not the only one to come to this conclusion as Paul essentially stated the same in his teachings.  You see, Jesus taught us that faith is love and that we should move in that love.  So, my point here is that faith cannot be dull and stagnant; faith must continue to improve and grow so that it can move.

We will see Peter state that we must add to our faith virtue, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness, and love (vss.5-7).  For what purpose are we adding these things to our faith?  There are two reasons that we will see Peter give us.

The first reason Peter gives us speaks along the lines of a bible study I did not too long ago – Warning Against Being Dull of Hearing.  Those that become dull of hearing essentially become lazy in their faith; their laziness hinders their growth in the faith and makes them more susceptible to falling.  So adding on to your faith can only strengthen and improve your faith through all that we go through.  You and I should desire to always continue to mature and grow in our faith.

Help fulfill our calling

We also have to keep in mind the task that we have all been commissioned to do by Christ.  Christ has called for us to spread the good news to all people; baptizing all people in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit while teaching them the same way that Christ taught us (Matt. 28:19-20).

Back in 2012, when I first began to publicly preach, I was just a baby in ministering the gospel.  I could adequately use my gift, but there was still much growth for me to do.  So, what did I do?  Did I just sit still in my studies?  Absolutely not.  I had already read the bible in its entirety, spent years in Sunday School and bible studies, but just because I began preaching, I did not stop.

Something seems to happen in the hearts of some believers to where some begin to believe they are too good for Sunday School or for Bible Study.  Let me tell you that nobody ever knows too much for Sunday School and for studying scripture.  So, as Peter states here, we should be diligently adding knowledge to our faith.  Paul said to study to show ourselves approved (2 Tim. 2:15).

Peter said to us that we need to be diligent to make sure our call and election is sure (v.10).  In other words, Peter is saying that just because you have become a believer does not mean you should stop increasing your faith!  Peter was saying don’t stop adding virtue, knowledge, self-control, kindness, and love to your faith.  Those that become dull of hearing are those who become more susceptible to falling out of the faith.

Yet, if we continue to add to our faith we put ourselves in the best position to better fulfill our calling in sharing the good news.  Not only do we put ourselves in the best position in sharing the good news, but Peter says we help ourselves when it comes to stumbling and falling.  As Peter said, the believer that continue to grow in their faith are those that will never have to question where their eternal home will be one day (v.11).

Eyes on heaven

As we come to a close in our lesson this week, we will see that Peter was looking ahead to his earthly journey coming to an end (vss.13-14).  So, Peter was sharing this message to encourage others to continue in true godliness (v.12).

Something that all of us believers must come to learn is that we don’t just live for ourselves.  No, we live in service to all of those that are around us, whether they are believers or not.  The true image of godliness, we have to remember, is based on the image and likeness of the Lord!

Does God only love a select few?  Absolutely not.  Jesus told us Himself that God loved the world which is why He gave the world His only begotten Son.  So, if we are striving to be Christ-like, then our love cannot be just for a select few!

The whole reason for us receiving the Great Commission is because the Lord loves all people.  God desires for all people to repent and become holy and righteous once again.  So, we should live with a mindset and a desire as believers that is heaven focused, not just for ourselves but for all of those around us.  Peter’s eyes was on heaven for not just himself, but for us, and our eyes should be trained in the same manner.


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