Summary: There are many Christians who are content to receive God’s grace on their lives, without growing and developing and maturing into the image of Christ.
Growing in God’s Grace
There are many Christians who are content to receive God’s grace on their lives, without growing and developing and maturing into the image of Christ.
Christians, who are complacent in their spiritual lives, who only seek after grace to cover their sin.
Grace is God’s unmerited favor, for growth for empowerment.
In 2 Peter 1:3 we are told that all things that pertain to life and godliness are given "through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue"
Also in 2 Peter 3:18 NIV He closes his epistle with this admonition:
18 But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen.
I.The importance of this scripture
We need to have a solid understanding of the grace of God..., which is essential to living a victorious life.
Grace is so much more than God’s unmerited favor.
1.It is the power and ability of God, available to meet our every need.
2.Without grace, we are nothing, we have nothing, and we can do nothing.
3.In fact, everything in the Bible...receiving salvation, being filled with the Holy Spirit, fellowshipping with God, and having victory in our daily lives...is based upon it.
Picture a table set with delicious food. Hungry people are gathered around it. God has prepared the food. It is free. If there are some who sit at this table and do not taste the food, it is their own fault. To be in the midst of plenty and to go hungry is certainly unreasonable behavior. Yet that is what is happening all the time. God’s bounty is not taken advantage of. God provides spiritual food, but He will not force it on anyone. Man must reach out and partake of it.
II.The Enemies of Growth in Grace and knowledge
Gal. 5:16,17 " KJV
For they that are after the flesh mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.... But ye are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you.... So then, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh: for if ye live after the flesh, ye must die; butt if by the Spirit ye put to death the deeds of the body, ye shall live." He also declares, "Walk by the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are contrary the one to the other; that ye may not do the things that ye would"
The prince of this world is a negative deterrent to development, directing all evil forces to the detriment of Christian character.
With the cross, the power of Satan is broken in the heart and life of everyone who accepts the atoning work of Calvary.
III.Goal of Growing in grace and knowledge
Matt. 5:48 "
Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect"
a)The aim and goal of growth are a character like unto Christ.
b)Christ is our example as well as Savior, being the embodiment of that which God would have redeemed man to become.
IV.How to Grow on Grace
2 Peter 1:3-8 KJV
3 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:
4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
5 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;
6 And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;
7 And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.
8 For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
V.What are the evidences of Growth in Grace and Knowledge?
A.An increase of love
i."By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another" (John 13:35).
ii.We are nothing without love (1 Cor. 13).
B.An increase of faith
i."We ought always to thank God for you, brothers, and rightly so, because your faith is growing more and more, and the love every one of you has for each other is increasing" (2 Thess. 1:3).
C.An increase of the knowledge of God
i."And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God," (Col. 1:10)