Gracefully Truthful


Discover the original intent of Scripture. Make good application to our everyday lives.
Become equipped to correctly handle the Word of Truth!

Read His Words Before Ours!

2 Peter 1:3-10

His divine power has given us everything required for life and godliness through the knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. 4 By these he has given us very great and precious promises, so that through them you may share in the divine nature, escaping the corruption that is in the world because of evil desire.

5 For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with goodness, goodness with knowledge, 6 knowledge with self-control, self-control with endurance, endurance with godliness, 7 godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. 8 For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being useless or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

9 The person who lacks these things is blind and shortsighted and has forgotten the cleansing from his past sins. 10 Therefore, brothers and sisters, make every effort to confirm your calling and election, because if you do these things you will never stumble.

The Original Intent

1) What constitutes “everything required for life and godliness” that God’s divine power has given us? (verse 3)

Peter wrote his letter in response to “reports of false teachers in and among the churches in Asia Minor. The apostle warned them about the insidious presence of those who spread heresies among the people.” (Chuck Swindoll)

Peter wanted believers to realize that God’s divine power provided everything they required for life and godliness through the knowledge of Him who called them by His own glory and goodness. (2 Peter 1:3)

Peter knew there would be no danger of Christians being influenced by heretics if they could firmly grasp the truth God had already provided through His Word. As author David Guzik points out, “Knowing God is the key to all things that pertain to life and godliness.” Peter taught that when we come to Jesus, God gives us the ability to share in His divine nature through the blood of Jesus that cleanses us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:7)

We have the opportunity to live in Christ, free from the bonds of sin that once held us captive. (Hebrews 2:15) Genuine Christ-followers are fully empowered by God’s own strength, which is shown to be perfect when set against the backdrop of our weakness. (2 Corinthians 12:9)

Matthew Harmon and John Sloat of The Gospel Coalition point out that “By partaking in the divine nature through Christ, [Christians] are experiencing the restoration of God’s image in them.” Our knowledge of God, including His love and grace for us and His promises to us, enables us to walk in His ways and become more like Him.

What an encouragement to know that everything we need to live a life that pleases God is already ours because of the power of Jesus in our lives!

The Everyday Application

1) What constitutes “everything required for life and godliness” that God’s divine power has given us? (verse 3)

Have you ever purchased a major appliance like a dishwasher or clothes dryer, just to discover it does not come with a power cord? This requires a return trip to the store to purchase one or figure out how to attach the one from your old appliance to your new one. It is so exasperating! You make these purchases so infrequently you forget about this not-included necessity. After all, you expected your purchase would include the main thing required to make it function; without the power source, your shiny new appliance is just an oversized, overpriced storage unit.

In 2 Peter 1:3, Peter makes the point that when you accept Christ as your Savior you are “hooked up” to His power immediately. In fact, His divine power provides you with everything needed to live a godly life. You don’t need to get the “upgrade” or buy the “accessory kit.” God gives you everything you need to live a godly life from Day One.

John Piper suggests, “The mark of sonship is divine power. And the mark of power is godliness; which means a love for the things of God and a walk in the ways of God.” Everything that is required to live a godly life is just this: knowing God, which connects you to His divine power. God graciously gives this power needed to live a life of godliness when you come to Him. His love and grace draw you to Him (John 12:32) and motivate you to follow after Him (John 14:15).

Trusting God not only saves, this intimate knowing of Him also empowers our daily life as believers!

The Original Intent

2) Why do we need to supplement our faith? (verses 5-8)

Faith. Goodness. Knowledge. Self-Control. Endurance. Godliness. Brotherly Affection. Love. Through the Holy Spirit’s inspiration, Peter teaches Christ-followers to actively cultivate these seven qualities in their lives by submitting to the work of the Holy Spirit within them. (2 Peter 1:5-8)

Supplementing our faith is like taking an already strong foundation and building upon it to make an unshakeable, towering structure. It’s not that the foundation needed help, but rather that we are intended to build the whole edifice of a solid, God-honoring life and not be content with a foundation alone. The strong foundation of faith provides a starting point for growing in godly character. John Piper suggests, “Since God has given power for godliness, strive to become godly! This is the heart of New Testament ethics. We labor for virtue because God has already labored for us and is at work in us.”

God desires His people to stand upon the good work He is doing in our lives (Philippians 2:13) and the power for godliness He provides and build upon it to make ourselves more and more like Jesus through the connective work of the Spirit. Christ-followers are to take an active role in their own development by working in partnership with the Spirit of God.

Peter urges us to be purposeful in advancing our faith (1 Timothy 4:7), building one virtue upon another as we become more like Jesus. If we don’t supplement our faith, we are in danger of becoming useless or unfruitful to God’s purposes, chief of which is becoming like Christ. (Romans 8:29)

We cannot fulfill God’s plans and purposes if we don’t progress and move forward in our faith (Ephesians 4:11-15). If we are stagnant, we are not growing more like Christ and our lives are missing out on testifying of God’s power.

The Everyday Application

2) Why do we need to supplement our faith? (verses 5-8)

I taught Spanish for 7 years, and even after becoming a stay at home mom, I taught homeschool co-op classes and lessons for my own kids. It has been a while since I taught a Spanish lesson or used Spanish for conversing and I’ve noticed my skills have declined. My husband, on the other hand, has been teaching Spanish for over 20 years, and his abilities continue to significantly improve. He purposefully immerses himself in Spanish through reading, watching television, conversing, and listening to media. We both graduated college as proficient speakers, but he is now closer to fluent because of his supplemental work whereas I have moved downward due to my lack of focus.

This effort to build on a solid foundation works in a spiritual realm as well. The Apostle Peter admonishes us in 2 Peter 1:5-8, “make every effort to supplement your faith with goodness, goodness with knowledge, knowledge with self-control, self-control with endurance, endurance with godliness, godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being useless or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ”.

Just like my husband’s Spanish language skills grew because he supplemented it with reading and listening, we can grow our faith by adding goodness and godliness and love through the divine power of God.

Similarly, just as my Spanish skills atrophied from non-use, our faith can become fruitless when we don’t supplement by adding self-control, endurance and the other characteristics.

Be encouraged that God makes it possible to build our faith by working with His grace and power (Ephesians 3:7) to cultivate godly qualities in our lives (John 15:5). Where is the Spirit leading you to cultivate His fruit in your everyday life? Lean in with excitement and submit to His leadership to grow deeper!

The Original Intent

3) How can we confirm our calling and election? (verse 10)

After encouraging his readers to live godly lives empowered by God and strengthen them by supplementing their faith with Christ-like characteristics, Peter urges Christians to make every effort to confirm your calling and election, because if you do these things you will never stumble”. (2 Peter 1:10)

Peter urges believers to be purposeful in carrying out the call of God on their lives. The more Christians exhibit attributes of Jesus, like love and self-control, the more we rely on the truth that God chose us and called us to be His co-laborers for His mission. (1 Corinthians 3:9)

Matthew Harmon and John Sloat assert, “Those who are diligent in pursuing their calling and practicing these virtues will never fall away from Christ, thus demonstrating that God has chosen them.” The more we become like Jesus, the more obvious it is He called us to be His own and chose us to carry out His will. The evidence is undeniable! (Ephesians 2:10)

John Piper suggests, “The confirmation of your election is your progress in sanctification. God predestined all the elect to be conformed to the image of Christ. (Romans 8:29) Therefore, the reassuring evidence of our election is Christ-likeness.”

Peter knows Christians will not fall away from God if they can be reminded and reassured that God is for them by seeing the fruit of His Spirit in their lives. (Galatians 5:22-23)

There is security in knowing beyond a doubt that God is working in our lives, and acting from this position of surety and strength enables us to be more edifying and encouraging to others who have heard His call to follow Him along the Way. (1 Thessalonians 5:11)

The Everyday Application

3) How can we confirm our calling and election? (verse 10)

The best schools emphasize internships and real-world experience before launching students into careers. Exposure to hands-on training is an integral part of the program. As a teaching, having the best practices and theories at your disposal is important but synthesizing it in the classroom is essential.

Knowledge alone is not enough. You must practice what you know to hone your craft and confirm that teaching is the right profession for you. More than one student-teacher has changed career paths after a few months spent in the classroom! One reason the most respected school administrators are former classroom teachers is because they have hard-earned experience in creating the best learning environments.

This type of hands-on development is what Peter advocates for when he instructs his readers through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit to make every effort to confirm your calling and election, because if you do these things you will never stumble.” (2 Peter 1:10)

When Christ-followers become more confident of God’s call on their lives, they are more eager to humbly allow His power to shape them to become like Jesus. (2 Corinthians 3:18)

When we see the love and compassion of Christ reflected in our own actions to those around us and confidently know this work is a result of God’s Spirit and not our own ability, we understand why God chose us to be His hands and feet to impact those around us in His Name. (1 Corinthians 12:27)

As we do the things God has called us to live out through the empowerment of His Spirit, we realize we are fulfilling the plans and purposes He laid out for us before we even knew His name or answered His call. (Psalm 139:16) This is a place of richest delight and satisfaction!

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