Posts

Showing posts from July, 2014

STRAINING FORWARD

Have you ever experienced a personal failure? I had one when I was in middle school.I look back at it and I’m reminded of the lack of performance and effort I gave at the age of twelve for my football team at Zundy Junior High in Wichita Falls, Texas. It was a team of champions who won the city title that year in 1966. But not me! During a regular season game I let the coach, the players and myself down because, as a 4th string player, I refused to go into the game when called on. I was scared because I didn’t know the plays. I didn’t prepare myself. After all I was way down on the list and the bench warmer never gets in the game—right?

Folks, this was 48 years ago, and it still hurts to think about it. If I could somehow reassemble that group for a second shot at it, even today, I would jump at the chance. This is almost funny, because today there are certainly other things more worthy of my attention. We all made mistakes we're tempted to revisit. Most of us have a quiver full of…

ADD AGAPE

The seventh virtue to add is finally before us as we conclude this study of the seven characteristics of a godly life outlined in 2 Peter. “Supplement your faith with a generous provision of moral excellence, and moral excellence with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with patient endurance, and patient endurance with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love for everyone.” (2 Peter 1:5-7)

This word is special not because it was the last virtue Peter shared but because it is the key to making all the other virtues meaningful. Sacrificial love is to be our hallmark expression of Christ living in and through us. We are not instructed to like everyone, we are told to love everyone. This is not the Philadelphia kind of love talked about last week, no; this is the kind of love Jesus Christ our Lord displayed when he went to the cross. This word used by Peter in verse 7 is “agape” love. When we demonstrate brotherly love w…

ADD PHILADELPHIA

Now at week six, we continue the discovery of the seven characteristics of a godly life outlined in 2 Peter. “Supplement your faith with a generous provision of moral excellence, and moral excellence with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with patient endurance, and patient endurance with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love for everyone.” (2 Peter 1:5-7)

The word this week is “brotherly affection or brotherly kindness”(the Greek word for this English phrase is “Philadelphia”— the name of a city in the state of Pennsylvania). I’m inclined to think that Peter learned this character trait the hard way. There is ample evidence that the disciples of Jesus Christ were frequently in disagreement with one another and debated each other heavily (see: Acts 15; Galatians 2). But he grew in grace and matured. Peter did learn to love his brothers in the faith. “Love each other deeply with all your heart.” (1 Peter 1:22)
We a…

ADD GODLINESS

At week five we continue uncovering seven characteristics of a godly life outlined in 2 Peter. “Supplement your faith with a generous provision of moral excellence, and moral excellence with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with patient endurance, and patient endurance with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love for everyone.” (2 Peter 1:5-7)

The word this week is “godliness”. A word we tend to avoid because it means “God-likeness” and we think, “Not me!” In the Greek wording it meant “to worship well” by describing a person who was right in their relationship with God and with his fellowman. Maybe the word “reverence” would come closer to describing this term. It is a character quality that makes a person distinctive. Even at that we say, “Not Me! There’s nothing that stands out in my life.” Well, you should be able to say as a Christ-follower that you are special and you do stand out from the crowd. You should …