Godliness and Sinfulness

2 Peter 1:1-3

Simon Peter, a bond-servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who have received a faith of the same kind as ours, by the righteousness of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ: 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.

The bible talks a lot about righteousness and godliness, doesn’t it?  I just realized that ironically, in many of my posts I talk about self-righteousness.  The theme of “clinging to the truth” seems to be current in my life.  The importance of it is evident in any Christian’s life: whether they do it or not and how it affects their relationship with God and others.  I love Peter’s introduction and salutation in this letter because he says more than just, “hello.”

Peter’s first letter was addressed to “those who are scattered and are of the faith.”  I’m not exactly sure historically if they weren’t considered scattered anymore by the time he wrote this letter; but we can definitely tell that this letter is to anyone who has received the faith of believing in the crucifixion of Jesus Christ as our Savior, the son of God, and that as a result we are once again able to be reunited with our Heavenly Father and Creator.  The phrase “knowledge of God” in verse 2 indicates that indeed it is about having a relationship with Him. How can you really know someone without having an intimate relationship with them?  We think we know God just by reading the bible (or other books, for that matter) but how many biographies have you read that left you feeling like you knew the person enough to be considered a close friend of theirs?  Sure, we may have a whole bunch of facts stored in our brain, but we don’t know for sure 1) if what we read is actually true and 2) if you would want to continue being friends with that person.

The more powerful verse in this passage is the third.  I read this and wonder what our problem is…why do we struggle with addictions, habits, and bad attitudes about life?  His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness.  Folks, we have the Spirit of God living in us!!!  We don’t have an excuse!  Too often we look at passages like this and think about performing physical miracles: speaking in tongues, healing the sick, raising the dead, etc.  But we jump the gun and haven’t even used that power to fix our own brokenness.  We talk about God healing us, forgiving our sinfulness, and even empowering us with the Holy Spirit.  But then we eat another donut, go to another pornographic site, turn our backs on those in need, give the finger to the guy who cut us off on our way to church, or buy another $500 painting to collect dust on our wall.  We want to be spiritual superstars but refuse the Power of the Spirit to fix the easy things.  Yes, the easy things.  Compared to healing leprosy, it’s easy to overcome an addiction or bad habit.  But we don’t because we are a stiff-necked people.

We have the power of God inside us, so why aren’t we acting like it?  The phrase “let go and let God” is being overused.  I say it is overused because we say or hear it without understanding the true meaning of it.  It’s not about our own willpower and strength, it is the power of God inside us that makes it possible.  However, He isn’t going to move until you are truly ready to let go.  We have to clean ourselves with the power of the Holy Spirit to be godly. Are you?

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