Summary: Sermon talkes about God provides everything we need in life and in right standing with God. He provides the faith we need need for our starting point and gives us his salvation but encourages us to add 8 characteristics
Valley Grove Assembly of God
July 20, 2014
Dr. Marilyn S. Murphree
All We Need in All Ways
Last week we talked about living in the sufficiency of God whether it was money needed to pay our bills or whether it was a sense of peace and calmness in our life or health and wellness for our bodies.
Today’s scripture in II Peter 1:1-12 is similar but has a little different slant on the idea of God’s provision for us. In verse 3 Peter says to them, “According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue”… Another version says, “We have everything we need for life and righteousness. Our life is what we talked about last week. Why did he say you have been given everything for life AND righteousness. What does righteousness mean? In my research of this verse I found that the best definition of righteousness simply means our right standing with God. People will often say, “I can’t be a Christian because I can’t live it.” God has provided all that we need to become a Christian in the first place and to maintain it and grow. A verse that tells us that is Ephesians 2:8, 9 “FOR BY GRACE (God’s unmerited favor) are ye saved through FAITH; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast.” Someone once told us, “I don’t need a Savior. I can save myself.” That is not scriptural for this verse says, not of works that we do lest any man should boast. He has provided the salvation we need to put us in right standing with God and even gives us the faith for our starting point. He has provided everything we need for life and right standing. John Wesley said, “salvation is just the beginning.” A lot happens after that as Peter points out in this chapter. He is writing to Christians. He doesn’t say who these Christians are but says, “I write to you whose experience is as life changing as ours.” He doesn’t say if they are new believers or long time believers, but he lets them know that God has given them everything they need to live a life pleasing to God. He said you have been called by God and you responded. Peter calls them to an active and progressive participation in this salvation. Some people think that all they need to do is to be baptized and join a church. “Got that taken care of” they say and think as long as their name is on some church membership roll that is all that is necessary. Peter says I want to remind you that you are saved by faith but the saving faith does not continue by itself. He says, “I want you to make every effort to ADD to your faith. Faith is the starting point but many people will not put forth the effort. He said you have been given “exceeding great and precious promises—your ticket to participation in the life of God after you turned from sin.
He reminds them that they are different people now and not to waste a minute. Grow in your new life. You remember the scripture in II Corinthians 5:17 that says, “if any [person] be in Christ, he is a new creature; old things are passed away: behold all things are become new.” The old has gone and the new has come because it is provided by God. This verse goes on to say it is “through Christ who reconciled us to God through the cross.”
Build on what you’ve been given. He gives eight things that are to be incorporated into their new lives. These are things that occur as a process over time rather than instantly. We might be slow in growing at times and get discouraged. That’s OK. Keep moving toward your goal to develop these characteristics over a period of time.
2. Add these 8 things to your faith: What are they? He starts out by saying add virtue. What does that mean? One definition says goodness but one I liked was good character. A person of good character will be different from a person who lives like the world. When I was growing up there was a woman in the church who never told the truth about things. It often got her into conflict with others. Everyone knew that she couldn’t be believed on anything. She was the biggest liar in ten states. She never did get lying out of her life. She has probably been dead for thirty years or more but the ONE thing I remember about her to this day was her telling lies. What would you want people to remember about you years later? I sure wouldn’t want people to say, “She was a nice person but you couldn’t believe a thing she said.” She had a character flaw that she never got rid of. Another example that comes to mind is of a preacher who was removed from his church for disciplinary action for a year and then reinstated and given another church. He had STICKY FINGERS, another character flaw that everyone in town knew about.