Saturday, February 14, 2009
2 Peter 1:3 tells us that we have everything we need for life and godliness. Really? Yes, we already have everything we need. It doesn't say we will get everything we need if we try harder or obey perfectly. No. We have it now in Christ. At the moment of salvation we immediately received everything we need to live an abundant and godly life.
This being the case, what are some of the things we have that are essential for life and godliness?
1. The indwelling presence of Jesus Christ through the person of the Holy Spirit. You see, the Holy Spirit is the One who empowers us to live the Christian life. We cannot live this life in our own strength, and God doesn't even want us to try to do it on our own. He wants us to live in daily dependence on Him. And don't forget, Romans 8:18 tells us we have the same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead. Powerful stuff, indeed!
2. The many promises of God in His Word. 2 Peter 1 mentions how we have His "precious and magnificant promises." It is as we know and claim scripture that we can live an abundant and godly life. Here is how it works: we have a struggle or a need. Rather than get frustrated or try to overcome it on our own, we go to God's Word, find a promise related to our situation, pray it, and hold fast to that promise until it comes to play in our life. God loves for us to claim scripture for specific situations in our life. What need or struggle do you have that you need to go to God's Word and find some promises about?
3. The Body of Christ - the church. The minute we receive Christ, we become a part of the body of Christ. His body is filled with people that can help and support us in our walk. God does not want us to be "lone ranger" Christians. He made us to need others, and the wise Christian is the one who intentionally seeks to develop deep relationships with other Believers. The church is one of the most under-utilized resources in the believer's life.
4. A new identity in Christ. I am convinced that one of the things that keep so many from experiencing the abundant life is an unbiblical self-image. Satan is the accuser of the brethren, and he constantly feeds us lies about who we are. He tells us we are no good, ugly, unloved, and worthless. On the other hand, God says we are loved, valued and accepted unconditionally. Our identity is not based on what we do but who we are in Christ. Rev. 12 tells us we overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony. For more truth on this, read Neil Anderson's Victory Over the Darkness.
To conclude, be encouraged today that as a follower of Jesus you already have everything you need for life and godliness. I am sure you can think of more aspects of what we have in Christ that make up 2 Peter 1:3. If so, just add them to the comment section!