4 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.
Once again Peter brings up the word “lust”. The Old Testament word for this is covetousness. Regardless of what word you use, it represents the inward selfish desire to have something you don’t have. When you lust after something or someone, you think selfishly and this is why it is sinful. But what is the difference between, let’s say, desiring a car and desiring a member of the opposite sex? If I desire my wife, is that a sin? If I desire a new car and am “in the market” for one, then isn’t it ok to “desire” a car I don’t yet have? The key here is how Peter describes the “lust”. It is that which leads to corruption. The definition of the Greek term used for lust is, “desire for what is forbidden.” How do we tell what is forbidden and what is not? Do we let society dictate it? Peter tells us right here!
For those of us who have accepted Christ’s forgiveness and have received the Holy Spirit, we have the “moral compass” inside of us! We find it in the book of Jeremiah, chapter 31 and repeated later in the book of Hebrews, “33 “But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the Lord, “I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.” The Holy Spirit, which is known as our Helper, is God’s Spirit inside of us. It is how His law is now written upon our hearts. It is what creates the Fruit of the Spirit. It is what Peter means in this verse about being partakers of the divine nature. God gifted us with His Spirit so we no longer need to be corrupted and unclean, but can be pure of heart, mind, and soul and therefore can be in communion with Him.
I have a more confrontational way of describing this, which I try to remind myself of often; we have no excuse. We have no good excuse to continue acting as if we are of the world, for we are no longer of the world. God has written His word and law upon our hearts and He has given us the power to implement it. So what is our problem? Why do we keep sinning? Because we fail to yield to it. We fail to turn over complete control. Our sanctification is a process of learning how to accomplish this.
God has given us the opportunity to become partakers of the divine nature. Are you partaking of the divine nature or allowing yourself to continue being corrupted by the lusts of this world?