Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins. Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble; for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. (2 Peter 1:2-11)
We Are Called To His Glory And Excellence
Everything needed for man to make his calling and election sure has been provided by the grace and mercy of God. The elements of a righteous life and the path of godliness are revealed to all men to follow as faith building blocks seeking the everlasting kingdom of Jesus Christ. All of the attributes of the virtuous characters of the saint mold an abundant life in the harmony of the Holy Spirit. There is a higher reason for these graces to be a vibrant part of the life of each Christian. When God ordained the nature of His children before time began, His desire was for them to show forth His own glory and excellence in their lives by imitating Him. The children become the Father.
God did not create man just to have something to create that could walk and talk. Forming Adam from the dust of the ground and taking a rib to form woman was a special creation designed to bring glory to the Almighty Creator. The animals bear the mark of the Maker’s hand but only in the physical appearance of His creative power. It is only in man that God shows His greatest power and purpose. Buried in man was the image of the Creator. Animals are dust and to dust they return with no life beyond. Man is an eternal being created to inhabit a mortal body. The image of God is born in the heart of man to show forth the majesty of the Creator. When man sheds his physical tent he lives eternally through the design of God. This eternal existence will be a time of joy or horror but eternal it will be. It is also during the earthly journey that man is to honor the image of the Creator and show His glory.
Peter enumerates many Christian graces that separate the child of God from the world of darkness. Each of these attributes will guide the heart, soul, mind and body into the paths of righteousness and truth. Above all of these graces the purpose of God is declared. The divine power of God has provided everything man needs to follow a life of godliness through the knowledge of Jesus Christ. Following these admonitions will secure an eternal home in the kingdom of God. What is found in these graces -exemplified in the life of those who have obtained the like precious faith – is the glory and excellence of the Almighty God. A life that is filled with godliness is a life that shows the incredible love of God. It is not man that is glorified – it is the Father. The spirit of man is cloaked with the mantle of the Holy Spirit in every part of his life. We are called by the glory of God to live for the glory of God. The virtue and excellence that brought us to the cross of Jesus Christ is the same spirit we fill our lives with. Children of God look like their heavenly Father and show forth His glory.
Jesus lived a perfect life because His will was to show forth the glory of His Father. He followed the same path of the graces Peter shares with his readers to find perfection. If there is a challenge to faith it will be answered by one or more of these graces. Growing in Christ can only be accomplished by following these graces of godliness. Increasing in each grace will bring about greater security and knowledge of salvation. Molding our lives by the characters of godliness will show the glory of God and manifest His spirit of light to a world given over to darkness. I shine bright because I shine God. His glory fills my life and His glory is what others see in me.