This is a question that most newly born again Christians most often ask. I know I also asked the same question when I was saved. Now that I am saved, what is the next step, what is that I must do on a day to day basis. What can I do to grow in the faith, to mature in the faith and stay strong in the faith. Jesus requires us to bear fruits, how do I do that?
I will attempt to answer this question as best as the Holy Spirit may guide me. May the Holy Spirit guide me and allow me to answer this question in a way that glorifies the name of God. In Jesus name, amen.
Just as a background to this message on 2 Peter. Peter was writing this epistle after his growing concerns with false teachers that were gaining momentum and wanted to encourage the believers to stay and trust in the word of God. 2 Peter talks about the truth of scripture and the genuiness of prophecy in chapter 1. In chapter 2 about false teacher and in chapter 3 about the day of The Lord that will come. Let’s look at our message. The message will be divided into six topics: the source of our faith, the call for growth in faith, the benefits of growth in faith, the encouragement, the reminder and lastly the duty to recall.
THE SOURCE OF OUR FAITH
2 Peter 1:1-15 (ESVST)
1 Simeon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ,
To those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ:
2 May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.
Peter in verse 1 starts by introducing himself as the writer of this epistle and also as an apostle of Jesus Christ. Peter also tell us that he is writing this letter to all who are Christians and recieved faith just like the ones they as apostles received. Peter is saying that all other Christians did not recieve an inferior faith. He emphasizes that we have all received the same faith just like the one that they as apostles also received.
Peter continues to say that the source of our faith was through the righteousness or holiness of our God and Saviour Jesus Christ. We know for reading other scriptures that our faith comes through Jesus Christ so, Peter here is calling Jesus God and Saviour. So, Peter names the source of our salvation as Jesus Christ.
Peter then says that grace (undeserved favor) and peace (the amplified translation defines peace as a perfect well- being, all necessary good, all spiritual prosperity, and freedom from fears and agitating passions and moral conflicts) multiply in or through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. Peter here makes it clear that our grace and peace will only multiply as our knowledge of God and of our Lord Jesus Christ increases.
3 His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence,
His in the above verse refers to God. Peter says that God has granted to us all things that we need, to live a godly life. These things were granted to us through our knowledge of him who has called us by means of his glory and excellence. Excellence here refers to God’s moral excellence or perfection. Through our knowledge of God, we recieved all things that we need to live a godly life. What is also important to note here is that God called us to himself by his own glory and excellence. Our calling came straight from God. This introduces a doctrine of predestination which is a topic for another time. God himself called us and through our increasing knowledge of him, we recieved all we need to live a godly life. God used his divine power to grant us all these things but we needed to increase our knowledge of him so that we can recieve them. The word granted means to freely give.
4 by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.
By which in the above verse refers to God’s glory and moral excellence. By these Peter says God freely gave to us his precious and very great promises. The word precious here in Greek means honorable or respected and great means exceedingly great. So, God gave us honorable and exceeding great promises so that through these promises, we may join in or take part or share in the divine nature having escaped the world and it’s sinful desires. In other words we will share in his eternal glory and moral excellence and also obtain eternal life in heaven. Our grace and peace is also multiplied though the knowledge of our God and Saviour Jesus Christ who is also our source of faith.
So, in summary, God called us to himself and gave us all that we need to live a godly life and gave us promises so that we can be like him and have eternal life in heaven. God gave us all things by his divine power and gave us promises of eternal life by his glory and moral excellence. Our part is to increase in our knowledge of him and through the faith that we obtained through our Lord Jesus Christ. This therefore means that once we are saved, the first step is to dedicate most of our time reading and understanding the word of God. In short, spend most of your time reading and understanding the bible so that you knowledge of God and of Jesus can increase.
We will continue next time with our message.
5 For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, 6 and knowledge with self- control, and self- control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, 7 and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. 8 For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins. 10 Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall. 11 For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
12 Therefore I intend always to remind you of these qualities, though you know them and are established in the truth that you have. 13 I think it right, as long as I am in this body, to stir you up by way of reminder, 14 since I know that the putting off of my body will be soon, as our Lord Jesus Christ made clear to me. 15 And I will make every effort so that after my departure you may be able at any time to recall these things.