"The Path to Victory - Qualities That Lead to Maturity in Christ"
By Rick Joyner
"Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord; seeing
that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, so that by them you
may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust.
"Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge,
and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness, and in your godliness, brotherly kindness, and in your brotherly kindness, love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they render
you neither useless nor unfruitful in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ."
The Blessings of His Promises & Divine Nature
Point 1: We have been given everything we need pertaining to life and godliness
by His divine power. The Lord has not just given us instructions on how to live, but He has also given us His Spirit to empower us to do it. We cannot say we do not have what we need to do His will.
Point 2: The promises of God are given
to us primarily so that we can become partakers of His divine nature. The improvements of our lives that His promises bring us are much more about how they help us to become who we are called to be, rather than possessions they allow us to have.
Point 3: As we possess these promises by which we take on His nature, we escape the corruption of this world that comes through lust. Lust is the counter to love and is a destroyer of the love we are called to live by.
That Lead to Maturity in Christ
This leads us to the sequence Peter lays out for growing in the eight qualities that lead to maturity in Christ:
2. Moral excellence
7. Brotherly kindness
Peter declares that if these are qualities that we have, and we are increasing in them, then we will be fruitful by having the "true knowledge" of our Lord Jesus
The Foundation of Diligence
Like the fruit of the Spirit, these qualities are the result of intentional focus and devotion, with the first of these being first for a reason—it takes diligence to grow
in all of them. New Year's resolutions are often quickly abandoned and forgotten for a lack of diligence, but these are far more important than resolutions—these are requirements for staying on the path of life.
Here we see
it takes a foundation of diligence to grow in moral excellence, and it takes that to grow in knowledge. These are all required to grow in self-control, which leads to perseverance. All of these lead to godliness, which then leads to brotherly kindness, which
leads to our ultimate goal: love. Peter then completes this magnificent exhortation with verses 9-11:
"For he who lacks these qualities is blind or short-sighted, having forgotten his purification from his former sins. Therefore, brethren,
be all the more diligent to make certain about His calling and choosing you; for as long as you practice these things, you will never stumble; for in this way the entrance into the eternal Kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will be abundantly supplied
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