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Welcome to Refinery Life Australia.

Today we are continuing our series based on the book of Exodus, that reveals God’s concern for His people.

The series is titled “The God Who Reveals Himself in Times of Need”

Today we are discussing Looking Backward and Forward.

Text

2 Peter 1:2 (AMP)

2 Grace and peace [that special sense of spiritual well-being] be multiplied to you in the [true, intimate] knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.

Scripture Reading

2 Peter 1:1-11 (AMP)

Introduction

As we come to the end of one year and approach the beginning of another, it would be a good idea to take a look backward and count our blessings and then take a look forward and make our plans to cooperate with the Lord.

The first few verses of Peter’s second epistle provide us with an opportunity to look at some of the blessings God has bestowed on us in the past.

It also provides us with some words of instruction and encouragement to live a life in which we are growing spiritually and serving significantly.

Peter addressed his message in 2 Peter 1:1 (AMP)

1 Simon Peter, a bond-servant and apostle (special messenger, personally chosen representative) of Jesus Christ,

To those who have received and possess [by God’s will] a precious faith of the same kind as ours, by the righteousness of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ:

He wrote from the perspective of an aged pastor who was living on the edge of eternity.

He spoke of his body as a tabernacle, or tent, from which would soon depart.

He referred to his approaching death as his “exodus,” or departure, the word used for the departure of the children of Israel from Egypt.

  1. The blessings of the past.

2 Peter 1:3-4 (AMP)

3 For His divine power has bestowed on us [absolutely] everything necessary for [a dynamic spiritual] life and godliness, through true and personal knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.

4 For by these He has bestowed on us His precious and magnificent promises [of inexpressible value], so that by them you may escape from the immoral freedom that is in the world because of disreputable desire, and become sharers of the divine nature.

The apostle called to the attention of his readers the exceeding great and precious gifts from God to them through Jesus Christ.

These two verses are a spiritual treasure chest that reveal the blessings that God has bestowed on believers through Jesus Christ.

The generosity of God’s provisions for His children is magnified and emphasised.

  1. “All things that pertain unto life and godliness.”

In Jesus Christ, believers have received everything necessary for experiencing the abundant life.

In is unnecessary for them to turn to any other teacher or discipline to be all God would have them to be.

B. “Through the knowledge of Him that has called us to glory and virtue.”

Through the beauty and glory of the life and character of Jesus chest, God calls all people to Himself.

The initiative belongs with God.

Salvation is of the Lord.

The human response to the gospel is a voluntary commitment of faith that makes possible the bestowal of these divine gifts.

C. “The exceeding great and precious promises.”

The Bible is a record of God’s promises to His people.

The Old Testament contains a continuing series of promises concerning the Messiah who was to come.

Peter had witnessed the fulfilment of these exceedingly precious promises in the person and the life of Jesus Christ.

Jesus made many promises to His disciples.

We can greatly enrich our spiritual life and deepen our faith if we will discover these promises, claim them for our own, and move forward depending on the Lord to keep His promises as people of faith have done in the past.

D. “That by these you may be partakers of the divine nature.”

Faith in the promises of God makes possible the new birth.

Being born again does not produce a divinity in people, but it does mean that the divine character, the divine nature, has been imported in embryonic form.

This new nature provides the believer with the possibility of experiencing and demonstrating the holiness, the tenderness, the gentleness, and the power of God.

By every means at our command, we should cooperate with the Holy Spirit as He seeks to develop the new nature we received in the miracle of the new birth.

E. “Having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.”

Through their experience with Jesus Christ, believers receive the potential for complete deliverance from the powerful evil forces that work in the world.

Christ has granted forgiveness from sin.

He provides spiritual power to overcome the contaminating presence of evil in the world.

Through faith in Him and though obedience to Him, we can be victorious over the assaults from the devil.

2. The opportunity of the future.

2 Peter 1:5-7 (AMP)

5 For this very reason, applying your diligence [to the divine promises, make every effort] in [exercising] your faith to, develop moral excellence, and in moral excellence, knowledge (insight, understanding),

6 and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, steadfastness, and in your steadfastness, godliness,

7 and in your godliness, brotherly affection, and in your brotherly affection, [develop Christian] love [that is, learn to unselfishly seek the best for others and to do things for their benefit].

The gift of new life has been given to those who had put faith in the promises of God.

This new life is like a divine seed that needs to be developed by earnest care.

Spiritual growth will not take place automatically or accidentally, Peter encourages his readers to hasten with all diligence to cooperate with the Spirit of God in developing the beautiful graces that are associated with spiritual maturity.

As we enter a new year, we should give careful consideration to these words of encouragement from the apostle Peter.

  1. “Giving all diligence, add to your faith.”

Faith is the human response to God’s grace that makes possible the gift of new life.

Faith is the basic foundation for all spiritual growth and service.

Peter challenged readers to supplement their faith with the Christian graces that are needed for fruitful Christian living.

Seemingly, each of the graces mentioned grows out of the preceding grace.

The word translated “add” probably would be more correctly translated by the word “supply.”

This word was used by the Greeks to describe the actions of those who provided financial resources for the production of the great plays and dramas.

It was also used for the action of furnishing the supplies and provisions for an army.

Peter declared that Christians are to supplement their faith with these virtues, which are actually the pieces of equipment needed for the living of a genuine Christian life.

The apostle gave us a blueprint for spiritual progress.

 

B. In your faith supply virtue.

Faith makes possible the power by which virtue is to be developed.

The word virtue means courage, moral excellence, noble character.

It is not tame and passive, it is active, aggressive, and on the march.

C. To virtue supply knowledge.

In the practice of virtue an effort is put forth to gain knowledge, which is practical skill in choosing the right and refusing the wrong.

To secure this knowledge, we must make a diligent study of God’s Word.

D. To knowledge supply temperance or self control.

Self restraint enables a person to curb his evil impulses and resist the lures of sin in the world that surrounds him.

Each person must be in command of his own moods and impulses, or his life will end in ruin.

E. To temperance supply patience.

The grace needed is endurance, steadfastness, fortitude, perseverance.

Patience is that attitude of determination that enables a person to stay under the load until the victory is won.

F. And to patience add godliness.

Godliness is that trait that characterises the life of a person who lives continually “as seeing Him who is invisible.”

Perhaps this grace refers to the growth of the divine nature received when born again.

G. To godliness supply brotherly kindness.

The life of reverence for God is issued in brotherly kindness.

The genuine worship of God will affect our attitude toward fellow humans.

1 John 4:20 (AMP)

20 If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates (works against) his [Christian] brother he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen.

H. To brotherly kindness supply love.

The crown of Christian graces is love.

Paul affirmed that love is the chief gift of the Holy Spirit in 1 Corinthians 13:13 (AMP)

13 And now there remain: faith [abiding trust in God and His promises], hope [confident expectation of eternal salvation], love [unselfish love for others growing out of God’s love for me], these three [the choicest graces]; but the greatest of these is love.

It was concerning Peter’s love that the Lord had inquired in John 21:15-17(AMP)

The Love Motivation

15 So when they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of John, do you love Me more than these [others do—with total commitment and devotion]?” He said to Him, “Yes, Lord; You know that I love You [with a deep, personal affection, as for a close friend].” Jesus said to him, “Feed My lambs.”

16 Again He said to him a second time, “Simon, son of John, do you love Me [with total commitment and devotion]?” He said to Him, “Yes, Lord; You know that I love You [with a deep, personal affection, as for a close friend].” Jesus said to him, “Shepherd My sheep.”

17 He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love Me [with a deep, personal affection for Me, as for a close friend]?” Peter was grieved that He asked him the third time, “Do you [really] love Me [with a deep, personal affection, as for a close friend]?” And he said to Him, “Lord, You know everything; You know that I love You [with a deep, personal affection, as for a close friend].” Jesus said to him, “Feed My sheep.

Peter recognised and commended the believer’s love for Christ in 1 Peter 1:8 (AMP)

8 Though you have not seen Him, you love Him; and though you do not even see Him now, you believe and trust in Him and you greatly rejoice and delight with inexpressible and glorious joy,

And encouraged love within the Christian brotherhood in 1 Peter 1:22 (AMP)

22 Since by your obedience to the truth you have purified yourselves for a sincere love of the believers, [see that you] love one another from the heart [always unselfishly seeking the best for one another],

Conclusion.

The apostle Peter was concerned that his readers experience the benefits that flow from spiritual maturity.

He was eager that they escape the tragic results of persistent immaturity in 1 Peter 2:8-9 (AMP)

8 and, “A stone of stumbling and a rock of offense”;

for they stumble because they disobey the word [of God], and to this they [who reject Him as Savior] were also appointed.

9 But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a consecrated nation, a [special] people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies [the wonderful deeds and virtues and perfections] of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.

Until next time

Stay in the Blessings

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I really want to encourage you to be diligent with your Bible study time, because God has so much more for us than we can get from just going to church once or twice a week and hearing someone else talk about the Word.

When you spend time with God, your life will change in amazing ways, because God is a Redeemer.

Theres nothing thats too hard for Him, and He can make you whole, spirit, soul and body!

You’re important to God, and you’re important to us at www.refinerylife.org

When it comes to prayer, we believe that God wants to meet your needs and reveal His promises to you.

So whatever you’re concerned about and need prayer for we want to be here for you! Or even if you just want to say Hi, you can contact us

2020 IS A YEAR OF CLARITY

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