Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Daily - 1/20/09

2 Peter 1:3-8

3 His divine power has bestowed on us everything that makes for life and devotion, through the knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and power.

4 Through these, he has bestowed on us the precious and very great promises, so that through them you may come to share in the divine nature, after escaping from the corruption that is in the world because of evil desire.

5 For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, virtue with knowledge,

6 knowledge with self-control, self-control with endurance, endurance with devotion,

7 devotion with mutual affection, mutual affection with love.

8 If these are yours and increase in abundance, they will keep you from being idle or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.


Here is some good guidance from the ancient church on how to share in the divine nature (“remaining in Christ” in John’s terminology). This is very instructive, but you have to break it down carefully to get the message.

According to verses 3 and 4:

- God gives us everything we need for life (v3)
- We receive this gift through knowledge of Christ (v 3)
- God has bestowed on us great promises (v 4)
- We may use these gifts to share in the divine nature ( v4)
- But first we need to escape the corruption in the world (v 4)

I very much want to share in the divine nature. To do that, I clearly need to escape the corruption of the world. How do I do THAT? First and foremost, I need faith in Jesus. Furthermore, I need to supplement (i.e., add to) my faith with virtue, knowledge, self control, endurance, devotion, mutual affection, and love.

Consider that thought for a while … faith isn’t complete (i.e., I won’t share in the divine nature) without supplementing it with these things. It is through these acts that we escape the corruption of the world. In Paul’s terminology, this is the process of putting the flesh to death.