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Let's Become Partakers of God's Character

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작성자 카마리오한인연합감리교회 작성일22-11-04 17:58 조회77회 댓글0건

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Date: 11/04/22

Sermon Title: 

Let's become partakers of God's character

Context: 2 Peter 1:4-11

(2 Pe 1:4) Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.

(2 Pe 1:5) For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge;

(2 Pe 1:6) and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness;

(2 Pe 1:7) and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love.

(2 Pe 1:8) For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

(2 Pe 1:9) But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins.

(2 Pe 1:10) Therefore, my brothers, be all the more eager to make your calling and election sure. For if you do these things, you will never fall,

(2 Pe 1:11) and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

 

Preaching Note  

1. Pope Leo X sold indulgences to build St. Peter's Basilica. Martin Luther, unable to accept the disguise of desire as faith, wrote ‘Thesis on the Declaration of the Power of Amnesty’ and ‘Thesis on the 95 Theses’ at noon on October 31, 1517, and posted it at the main gate of the University of Wittenberg.

    Luther proposed three mottos to bring the corrupt 16th-century Catholic Church back to the gospel of Jesus Christ. 'Sola Scriptura', 'Faith alone (sola Fide)', and 'Grace alone (sola Gratia)'. Against the authority and decree of the Pope, he declared ‘Only the Bible’, against authority and decree, ‘Only faith’ against indulgences, ‘Only grace’. against the idea of ​​merit.

    Today, however, these three slogans have become dead slogans as they have been idealized and dogmatized. ‘Only the Bible’ has been transformed into biblicalism, ‘Faith alone’ into faith supremacy that takes conscience and ethical behavior lightly, and ‘Grace alone’ into cheap grace.

Q.1 When do I neglect ethics?

 

2. Today's Bible text is 2 Peter, which belongs to the Common Epistles. The book of 2 Peter is believed to be the last document written in the New Testament, written at the beginning of the 2nd century. There is nowhere else in the New Testament that people participate in the divine nature (1:4) through Christ.

    The author of 2 Peter faces the secular and powerful, destructive forces of that world that have already entered the church, in a situation that promotes moral indulgence, which was overflowing at the time, interprets the written revelations arbitrarily, and undermines the church and faith. The author presents the decisive solution to drive out the filthy world that corrupts us and to 'know' God and Christ (1:4) and eventually participate in 'his divine nature (1:5-7). In verses 5-7, the eight virtues of faith are mentioned as the content of the divine nature.

    First, it is faith. The divine nature begins with ‘faith’. (verse 5). Through faith, you accept the fact that you have been forgiven of your sins. (verse 9). Through faith we receive our calling and choose as our own. (verse 10). We enjoy the hope of entering the kingdom of God through faith. (verse 11). Faith is the beginning of the divine nature. But if you don't take it to the next level, it can be a fragile faith. Faith alone cannot be perfect.

    Second, we must add virtue to our faith. (verse 5). Faith is a God-given power. Through faith, we receive the blessings that God gives us, and we gain freedom. But how to use that freedom requires another divine nature. That's a virtue. If the faith lacks virtue, he will not limit his religious freedom for the weak or give up his religious freedom to win the unbelievers. ‘Virtue’ complements the self-centeredness of ‘faith’. We can add virtue to our faith “by knowing God and Jesus Christ.”

    Third, we must add knowledge to virtue. (Verse 5). The knowledge here is the knowledge that discerns virtue. There are many different situations in which virtue should be built. So, you need the knowledge to discern. The intention to edify is good, but without knowing it cannot be built. If you want to build a house but don't know about architecture, it's just plan. Therefore, the will to edify becomes complete only when the divine attributes of knowledge and wisdom are added.

   Fourth, we must add temperance to knowledge. (Verse 6). Just as faith loses its direction when it is not virtuous, so knowledge can abuse the freedom it gains without the addition of temperance, i.e., self-control. With knowledge we can cover our sins, cultivate evil, and spread self-indulgence and pride. Knowledge is further perfected by the divine nature of temperance.

    Fifth, perseverance must be added to temperance (Verse 6). Patience is required to embody temperance as one's own divine nature. The word 'perseverance' is to endure the pressure and weight of 'under' some control, and to 'stay' under it. It's not something you put up with without a purpose or a period of time. It is the process of going through a podium to achieve a trained state. Temperance is a power you can control. Patience is a training process that equips you with that power in your character. So, in the end, with this disciplined power of temperance, we use our knowledge, build our virtues, and perfect our faith.

    Sixth, we must add godliness to patience. (Verse 6). True godliness not only fears God, but also loves him and obeys his will. A life of obedience to his will is a life of caring for the brothers of faith. The love of God is manifested through brotherly love and made perfect through it.

    Seventh, we must add brotherly kindness to godliness. (Verse 7) Godliness overcomes all kinds of temptations and persecutions and makes us wait for the final judgment and salvation, but brotherly kindness makes us realize that waiting is not something we do alone.

    Eighth, we must add love to brotherly friendship. (Verse 7). The divine nature that begins with faith is completed with love. That love was in God, but now it is established as a character in that person. Therefore, faith must lead to love. Faith must have a direction for edification, and in order to be edified, it must have knowledge; knowledge is perfected through self-control and self-control through perseverance, leading to true godliness, which leads to brotherly kindness, and brotherly kindness. Again, perfection is achieved by approaching love, that love given and made known by God and Jesus Christ.

Q. What is the disposition of God that I have?

 

3. Verse 8 says, “When these things are provided for you, and you have enough, you will not become lazy or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Many people misunderstand the saying that acts are the fruit of faith. Verse 8 teaches that good faith does not automatically produce good acts. It says that we can become fruit-bearers when we are equipped with the eight virtues mentioned above and are abundant. As James 2:22 says, faith and acts can bear fruit when they work together.

    Verse 11 says that the divine nature expressed in the eight virtues is a decisive factor in entering the kingdom of God. “And you will be fully qualified to enter the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (verse 11). Here are some things to watch out for. Christianity is not a religion that teaches that we are saved by the merits of doing many good deeds. Salvation is by the grace of God. The initiative of salvation rests entirely with God. But at the same time, today's text says that human participation is also important as a response to God's grace in the entire process of salvation. Salvation is not accomplished by God alone, nor by human effort alone. When the Word of the Bible deals with the problem of man's salvation, it simultaneously refers to the total grace of God and man's responsibility in the process of salvation. We must not forget that salvation is both a gift from God and a task accomplished in freedom.

Q.3 What am I trying to experience the kingdom of God?


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