Just Making Sure

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2 Peter 1:10 Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall:

Opening: When I was a boy one of the greatest Rock Bands of that day was called “The Beatles”. The Beatles were an English Rock Band from Liverpool, England. Highly influential, the Beatles popularized long hair, free love, music videos, and use of mind altering drugs. The group was anything but Christian. John Lennon, the group’s leader, said:

Christianity will go. It will vanish and shrink. I needn’t argue about that: I’m right, and I will be proved right. We are more popular than Jesus now; I don’t know which will go first, Rock and Roll or Jesus. Jesus was all right, but His disciples were thick and ordinary. It’s them twisting it that ruins it for me.”

People have been promising the destruction of Christianity since Jesus rose from the grave – and yet, our faith continues on. The Beatles broke up April 10, 1970 – only about 10 years after the band was formed. John Lennon was killed by a madman December 8, 1980, a little over ten years after the band broke up. …

And yet Christ and His followers continue on. Why is this? Because our Founder, the Lord Jesus Christ, is greater than anyone who has ever been. Jesus is not just a Carpenter’s son, born in a small town named Nazareth. Jesus is more than this. We who follow Jesus know that the world will always be against our Savior. Yet we are not discouraged. We …

Hebrews 12:1-2 … lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, 2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Our Savior was not dominated by death. Though executed unjustly, He laid His life down for us, to make payment for our sins. Jesus said,

John 10:18 (ESV) No one takes {my life} from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This charge I have received from my Father.

The Christian’s Savior and Lord is no mere mortal Man. He is Perfect Man. He is “God with us” (Matthew 1:23). Jesus is Co-Creator with God the Father. Jesus Christ is God in the flesh, God among us. The Scripture says:

Colossians 1:15-20 (ESV) {Jesus} is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by {Jesus} all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. 17 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. 19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.

Because Jesus – the Son of God and the Son of Man – gave Himself for our sins, we who are saved and called “Christian” are brothers together, family together, and God is our Father. The Apostle tells us to:

2 Peter 1:10 Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure

First the Scripture calls the Christian BRETHREN. We are Family together. God is our Father because of Jesus. When Jesus rose from the Grave that Sunday morning so long ago, He told Mary Magdalene:

Do not cling to Me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; instead, GO TO MY BROTHERS and say to them, ‘I AM ASCENDING TO MY FATHER AND YOUR FATHER, TO MY GOD AND YOUR GOD” (John 20:17)

Jesus Christ is God’s only Begotten Son, but because of Jesus we who believe are adopted of God, born again of the Blood of Christ. As Peter speaks to the Church, he makes no judgments. But he tells each confessor of Christ to “give DILIGENCE” (spoudazō, hasten to do QUICKLY, use SPEED, do not PROCRASTINATE). We are not to put this off, but to examine ourselves and make sure that we have been called and chosen. We do not want to stumble on this point. In school, I hated Algebra. I couldn’t see a use for it. I can understand:

1 + 3 = 4 or 1 x 3 = 3

I had no problem with simple mathematics. As a woodworker, I use fractions and wholes. I can do a certain amount of math in my head. But I never could understand Pythagoras Theory, which states:

In any right triangle, the area of the square whose side is the hypotenuse (the side opposite the right angle) is equal to the sum of the areas of the squares whose sides are the two legs.”

Huh? I’m sure somebody needs this, but it goes over my head. There are many things I do not understand. For instance, I don’t know how our government can just print money that is back by nothing, and can’t fix the deficit. If the government can print money at will, why not just print 40 trillion dollars and pay off our debts? But I digress.

There are many things we don’t understand. But God wants you to KNOW that you are saved. This is the MOST important thing you will ever need to know.

The Saved Are CALLED By God And CHOSEN To Do Good

2 Peter 1:1 Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Savior Jesus Christ:

No one just stumbles upon Jesus. Jesus calls us to salvation. Jesus said in

John 6:44 No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day.

What Jesus mean by this? The word translated draws is the Greek helkō which means “to draw or drag”. God must be involved in the salvation process. Though the works of God are clearly seen all around us (Psalm 19:1, “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork”), the darkness of sin blinds our hearts to the love of God in Christ. God must open our eyes to His glory. The Bible says:

1 Corinthians 2:14 (ESV) The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned.

God must open the eyes of the sinner. The Holy Spirit brings conviction of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment (John 16:8), opening the eyes of the lost. But once their eyes are opened, they are free to choose – or not!

2 Peter 1:1 Simon Peter, a servant and
an apostle of Jesus Christ

This is what happened in the salvation of Simon Peter. His Brother Andrew found Jesus, then went to Peter and said “We have found the Messiah” (John 1:41-42). When Jesus met Simon, He told him ““You are Simon the son of John. You shall be called Cephas” (which means Peter)”. Simon was a fisherman, serving himself and his family. But now Jesus called him and Andrew:

Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men” (Matthew 4:18)

Simon was Simon the fisherman. But called of Christ, He is now Simon Peter, a servant and an Apostle of Jesus Christ. This is his identity. Simon belongs to Jesus. Simon, like us who are saved, is called to Jesus’ side. We are:

1 Corinthians 6:20 … BOUGHT with a PRICE. Therefore GLORIFY GOD in your BODY and in your SPIRIT, WHICH ARE GOD’S.

The Christian does not belong to himself. The Christian belongs to Jesus. Though Simon Peter continued to fish, his priority was to serve Christ.

Colossians 3:23-24 Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, 24 knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.

You are called to serving the Lord Christ. You are also called into the Church to serve one another. Peter is not just a servant of Jesus Christ, but he is an apostle of Jesus Christ. The Bible says that God puts every believer into the Body of Christ, the Church, to work together to serve the Lord. Peter’s call was to be an Apostle. The Apostle Paul addresses this in 1 Corinthians 12.

1 Corinthians 12:11-14 … the … Spirit, dividing {spiritual gifts} to every man severally as he will. 12 For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. 13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. 14 For the body is not one member, but many. 18 But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.

The saved are CALLED to be children of God and servants of Christ. The saved are CHOSEN to do good, to possess and use spiritual gifts within the Body for the glory of Christ. We are not saved by our works, but once saved, we work for Jesus and for one another. The Spirit gives us spiritual gifts as He decides best. We are to work TOGETHER in Christ’s Body to glorify God, and to lift one another up as the family of God. Even though Simon Peter was an Apostle (a chief leader in the early Church), he was no more saved than the other members of the Body.

2 Peter 1:1 Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Savior Jesus Christ:

We are all saved by like precious faith. The words translated like precious is the Greek isotimos (pronounced ee-sot’-ee-mos), which means “of equal value or honor”. This faith is – according to the text – “OBTAINED”. We receive it as a gift from God through the righteousness of God and our Savior Jesus Christ. Every Christian has a common experience with God. God calls to us in our hearts, and we come to Him by faith. It is a word of Faith that we have all responded to.

Jesus called, and we responded. I am not a higher category of Christian than you are just because I am a Pastor. It is by Grace I am a Pastor. I have neither earned it, nor deserved it. I am saved the same as you are, the same as Peter was, through the righteousness of God and our Savior Jesus Christ. Because we all received Christ Jesus as the One and Only Messiah, because we surrendered our lives to Him, we are saved. The Scripture says:

Titus 3:5-7 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; 6 Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior; 7 That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

The “Word of Faith” is a simple message. The Scripture says:

Romans 10:8-11 (KJV) … The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; 9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. 11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

The Saved Are Equipped To Grow

2 Peter 1:2-3 Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, 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:

It is Grace that saves us and brings us peace with God. We “grow in Grace” (2 Peter 3:18) as we learn more about our God and our Savior. God has given us all that we need to grow spiritually. We are told His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness. We have all we need to grow in Grace.

We are given the Holy Spirit, by which we learn Biblical Truth (John 14:17; 15:26)
We are given the Holy Bible, the Words of Life
(John 6:68; Acts 5:20; Revelation 22:19)
We are given access to God through Christ our High Priest (Ephesians 2:18)
We are given unified purpose through His Church. (1 John 3:2)

Before Jesus went to the Cross to die for our sins, He took Peter, James, and John to a private place on a mountain near Jerusalem. Jesus went up the mountain with His three chosen ones, and at that place Elijah and Moses appeared on either side of Christ. This is so interesting to me! When Moses met God on the mountaintop of Sinai, God gave Moses the Law for Israel. And when Elijah met God on the mountaintop of Carmel, God gave him power to overthrow the false gods that His Israel had begun to follow under King Ahab and Queen Jezebel. One one side of Jesus stood Elijah, that Great Prophet. Jesus completed the prophecies, showing Himself to be the one and only Messiah. On the other side of Jesus stood Moses, that Great Giver of the Law. The Law could not save mankind, neither could the prophets. In the midst of this splendor Peter spoke up:

Luke 9:33 … Jesus, Master, it is good for us to be here: and let us make three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah: not knowing what he said

Almost before Peter finished speaking, God the Father spoke from Heaven, saying:

Luke 9:34-35 While he thus spake, there came a cloud, and overshadowed them: and they feared as they entered into the cloud. 35 And there came a voice out of the cloud, saying, This is my beloved Son: hear him.

The Prophets spoke of the Coming Christ. The Law was a shadow of the Coming Christ. But now Jesus is here: we are to HEAR HIM. He is God’s Beloved, God’s Messiah, God’s Savior for those who will believe. Peter does not speak of this moment until this letter, when he writes:

2 Peter 1:16-21 For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17 For he received from God the Father honor and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. 18 And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount. 19 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: 20 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. 21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy {Spirit}.

God spoke and continues to speak through His Holy Scriptures. We have a sure word of prophecy from God.


2 Peter 1:4-7 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.

God has given to the Christian exceeding great and precious promises. God cannot lie (Numbers 23:19; Titus 1:2; Hebrews 6:18), so every promise He has made us in Christ shall come true. What are the things that God has promised us?

Romans 16:20 (ESV) The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet …

Philippians 1:6 (ESV) .. He Who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ …

Isaiah 43:2 (ESV) When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through the fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you

John 10:28 (ESV) I give unto them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand

John 6:37 (ESV) All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and whoever comes to Me I will never cast out ..

Hebrews 13:5 (ESV) …. I will never leave you, nor forsake you …

Once saved, every Christian becomes the workmanship of God. It is God’s intent that we might be partakers of the divine nature. We are to be like Jesus. We are not saved, then left by the road of life. God the Spirit comes into our lives, and begins to work in us to make us more like Christ Jesus. The Christian is called to imitate Christ, to develop the attributes of a son of God, not the ways of the sons of Adam. We add to our walk with God. “Add to” is the Greek (epichorēgeō Pronounced ep- ee-khor-ayg-eh’-o). A living faith is a growing faith. It progresses. If we are saved we will add to our faith. What adds to our faith?

1 Add to your faith VIRTUE or GOODNESS . Jesus did good things, and His Children by faith should do good things. The Psalmist said:

Psalms 34:13-14 (KJV) Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile. 14 Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it.

Do good with your lips. How often did you see Jesus running about badmouthing other people? Did Jesus murmur, or curse, or blaspheme God? Was He a gossip? No, none of it. Jesus Christ was an encourager, an uplifter, a builder, not a wrecking ball.

2 Add to your faith KNOWLEDGE. Read the Word of God. So many people tell me that they don’t read the Word because they don’t understand it. So what? When I was in the military I often read manuals that I didn’t understand. Read the Word and ask God the Holy Spirit to guide you.

3 Add to your faith TEMPERANCE. This is the Greek enkráteia, {pronounced eng-krat’-i-ah}, which means “self control. One who master’s his passions and desires”. We are to control our heart, not to follow our heart.

4 Add to your faith PATIENCE, GODLINESS, BROTHERLY KINDNESS, and LOVE. I wish I had time to cover each of these things in detail, but I don’t. We must be patient with one another, for we who are Christians are called to grow together to be like Jesus. Just as every plant in the field doesn’t grow at the same rate, Christians don’t grow at the same rate. We as believers are called to work together for the glory of God. The Scripture says:

Ephesians 4:30-32 (ESV) And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. 32 Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

Illustrate: I love to read the Peanuts cartoons. In one cartoon Lucy tell Charlie, “Our family has solidarity! And our family has loyalty and”… At that moment Linus walks over to Charlie and Lucy hoping to get in on the conversation. Lucy stops talking to Charlie to yell at Linus, “Why don’t you stop dragging that stupid blanket around, you blockhead!” She turns back to Charlie, saying “and this family has love for one another.”

Our Lord Jesus said:

John 13:35 (ESV) By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.

Our faith will never reach others if we do not add to it the things that God says we should add to it.

2 Peter 1:9 … But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.

Let us live for the glory of God! Through Christ Jesus, for His glory, we ask these things. Amen and Amen.

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
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