2Pe 1:1-9 Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ: Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.
First of all we notice that this is a recipe by which a final product is produced. One ingredient is added to another and when complete the desired product is created. There is addition and multiplication and a final Total.
The FINAL PRODUCT IS FULL KNOWLEDGE OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST
GOD”S PART the powerful raw ingredients:
- vv 1-2 Grace and Peace multiplied through the knowledge of God and Jesus our Lord, upon which our faith rests.
- v. 3 his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called [summoned] us to glory and virtue
- v.4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature [one of God’s purposes for giving us everything mentioned above], having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
God has given us (for our possession) grace and peace, all things that pertain to life and godliness, exceeding great and precious promises by which we can have share of God’s nature. And escape the corruption in the world. This is God’s purpose/plan for saving us, and he used his power (v.3) to make sure it happens.This is not a wish!
We can see that God himself has given us everything necessary to produce the final product.
Our Part, the Cooking:
2Pe 1:5 And beside this, giving all diligence [stay busy producing what God intends],
add to your faith [faith received by lot (grace) in verse 1] virtue [vigor, energy, likely the utilization of God’s power in v.3. “Put on the whole armor!”}; and to virtue knowledge [intelligence, understanding]; And to knowledge temperance [self-control opposed to instinct driven impulsive behavior]; and to temperance patience [brave waiting, endurance]; and to patience godliness [god likeness, behavior designed to please God, like he intended when he made Adam and Eve];
2Pe 1:7 And to godliness brotherly kindness [Philadelphia; genuinely loving fellow Christians because they are cherished by you.]; and to brotherly kindness charity [Agape; loving others because they are God’s valuable creation.]
We can see in the text, all of these virtues come from their own level of KNOWLEDGE OF CHRIST OUR LORD. These are the “all things which pertain to life and godliness” in verse 3. God has given us these virtues through the knowledge of Himself and Jesus our Lord. Remember we are, in this Christian life, learning every day who Jesus is as our Lord/ruler/king/manager etc. Each of these ingredients, when added to our lives, gives us a greater experiential knowledge of who our Lord is to us and in this universe.
We add each of these virtues because we receive KNOWLEDGE of their value to us in his word, the Bible. In that way virtue is seen and taken hold of, first through knowledge. (No wonder God gave us his written Word!)
So, these virtues can produce a full knowledge of Jesus Christ because each one when added is a measure of experiential knowledge of the Lord Jesus.
2Pe 1:8 For if these things be in you, and abound [multiply. This is the other math in this recipe, it’s multiplication. v2 tells us God has already solved this equation, he’s the multiplier.],
they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
[God’s intended transformation is realized—FULL EXPERIENCIAL KNOWLEDGE OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST. We were born to be like him, and through experiencing him in every aspect of our life, through the knowledge and direction of scripture, we gain a full knowledge of him.]
2Pe 1:9 But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten [taken hold of forgetfulness] that he was purged from his old sins.
The Knowledge described in this passage is knowledge gained through perception/spiritual sight; this knowledge is seen and acquired in the words and promises of the gospel and scripture, believed in faith, and embraced. The person who lacks the added virtues is blind to them, he cannot see the promises and hope to which the gospel points, so he has no way to value them enough to “give all diligence and add…” He like those in the parable of the sower, “received the word of the gospel with joy”, but that’s as far as his eyes could see, so he is barren and unfruitful in the true FULL knowledge of the Lord Jesus. In fact he has even left behind (forgotten) that he was purged from his old sins. Thus he can add nothing to what he has left behind.
Peter will not let his readers take FORGETFULNESS:
2Pe 1:10,15 Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Wherefore I will not be negligent to put you always in REMEMBRANCE of these things, though ye know them, and be established in the present truth. Yea, I think it meet, as long as I am in this tabernacle, to stir you up by putting you in REMEMBRANCE; Knowing that shortly I must put off this my tabernacle, even as our Lord Jesus Christ hath shewed me. Moreover I will endeavor that ye may be able after my decease to have these things always in REMEMBRANCE.
This passage is an amazing promise and detailed, step by step recipe for experiencing a full knowledge of Jesus Christ our Lord in this life.
There is addition and multiplication and a final Total. The FINAL PRODUCT IS FULL KNOWLEDGE OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST
Think about finishing the whole chapter and letter.