Newspaper Article. 5.12.19
“God’s Provision for Growing Spiritually”: 2 Peter 1:3-4
Dr. Gary M. Barker
In our past meditations, I have taught that spiritual growth and maturity is a supernatural process accomplished by the power of God (2 Corinthians 3:17-18). It is impossible for a believer to transform his sinful character and become Christlike in his own power and ability. God lives in a believer in order to enable him to be transformed into a holy person (Galatians 2:20, 1 Peter 1:14-16). God commands every believer to grow in the grace and knowledge of God and He gives us the provision to be able to be obedient to His commands (2 Peter 3:18). We are to become diligent in producing godly virtues in our life (2 Peter 1:5-10).
God has made every believer a “new creature” when he is saved (2 Corinthians 5:17). God has made it possible for a believer to have the POTENTIAL to be changed and live an entirely different life of holiness and godliness. The apostle Paul in Ephesians 4:23-24 refers to this potential as “putting on the new man”. The result of this renewal is living a righteous and holy life. A believer matures when he stops doing sinful things and becomes holy. The apostle refers to this as having old things passing away (2 Corinthians 5:17). The old things were sinful activities that were habitually done as an unsaved person: old value system, priorities, beliefs, desires, and plans. God replaces the old lifestyle of sin with an entirely new life style which is holy and Christlike. A believer is given a new mind (1 Corinthians 2:15-16) and is able to learn from the Bible how to live a life that pleases and honors God. God will develop in the mind of a believer a spiritual perspective of life that will involve living and doing things that will have everlasting value instead of temporal and material value.
In 2 Peter 1:3-4, the apostle Peter reveals what God has given every believer in order to develop a godly life.
- We have been given DIVINE POWER: 1:1-3
- We have been given DIVINE PROMISES: 1:4
- We have been given a DIVINE PERSONALITY: a new nature: 1:4.
These Divine provisions will enable a believer to grow spiritually. The Divine Trinity of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit live in the body of every believer (Ephesians 4:6, Colossians 1:26-27, Romans 8:9) and their presence provides all of these provisions. God will enable a believer to mature spiritually thru His Divine power, promises, and personality. A GREAT TRUTH is that God lives in us so that He can live HIS LIFE thru us (Galatians 2:20).
My prayer for every believer is that we will develop our potential as a “new creature”. Our lives will be greatly blessed with joy and happiness when this happens (1 Peter 3:10-12)