Summary: To know is to be free, adding knowledge to virtue.
Would you believe a smoker who warns you about the dangers of smoking? Or, would you believe a drunkard who warns you about the error of drinking alcoholic drinks? Would you say that they really believed what they claimed to believe?
What about Christians who sing that God will make a way but still they worry a lot? What about those who say that God is the owner of their businesses yet they cheat on their taxes or does not give the right wages to their employees? Would you say that they really believed what they claimed to believe?
It’s what we do rather than what we say that reveals a lot about what we really believe. In other words, action speaks louder than...? 2 Peter 1:5 tells us, “For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge”. Last week, we learned that to know is to obey. What we do reveals what we know. We already saw that the word “knowledge” here refers to practical knowledge. “The word does not mean a mere intellectual understanding of some truth, though that is included. It means a living participation in the truth”. Adding knowledge to virtue is basically obeying what we already know from the Word of God. That’s why the opposite of knowledge is disobedience. This morning we will continue our study on adding knowledge to virtue. Let us pray first…
Some people say, “Ignorance is bliss.” It’s another version of “What you don’t know won’t hurt you.” But we already saw that what we don’t know would hurt us, not help us. This brings me to my next point. To know is TO BE FREE. Ignorance is not bliss. Ignorance is actually BONDAGE.
Peter wrote this letter to warn believers about false teachers who infiltrated the church: “They promise them freedom, but they themselves are slaves of corruption. For whatever overcomes a person, to that he is enslaved.” Where do these false teachers bring us? Into bondage! That’s why we really need to know what and why we believe.
Now, how do we know that we are not in bondage? We tend to think, “That’s not me!” We tend to assume it’s someone else or everyone and anyone but us. But, the danger is that we could be in bondage yet we are not aware that we are in that sad condition.
2 Timothy 2:25-26 described it for us. Here Paul wrote that a servant of the Lord should be “correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.” Note how our passage described people who are trapped in “the snare of the devil”. They were “captured by him to do his will.” So, when we disobey God, we are not doing His will. We are actually doing the devil’s will. If we are ignorant of the truth or we are disobedient to the truth, we are actually in bondage to the lies of the devil.