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Fatih Alone?

The Voice of Sovereign Grace / Doug Agnew
The Truth Network Radio
June 27, 2022 2:00 am

Fatih Alone?

The Voice of Sovereign Grace / Doug Agnew

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June 27, 2022 2:00 am

Join us as we worship our Triune God- For more information about Grace Church, please visit www.graceharrisburg.org.

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Return with your varnished circuit literal pewter second Peter will be looking divided verses five through nine, but want to read beginning beginning the chapter see this in context. Peter writes Simon Peter of servant and apostle of Jesus Christ to those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with hours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ. My grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious promises and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire for this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue and virtue with knowledge and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection and brotherly affection with love for if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins pray with me in the father by your grace. We have obtained the precious faith with perceived and proclaimed by the apostles. We stand forgiven and made holy by the righteousness of Jesus Christ by your divine power. We've been granted precious promises that we might become partakers of your divine nature is you've done for us and to us you command us to work out our salvation. Because you work in us to will and to do your good pleasure. Open our ears to hear your word open our minds to know your ways open our hearts to obey because we love you. Come Holy Spirit.

Even now, and empower the preaching and hearing and responding to your word. In Jesus name we pray. Amen.

Maybe seated several weeks ago we looked at the first four verses of this letter. The second letter of Peter reminded that God has graciously graciously given us salvation in Jesus Christ that we have come to faith in him by God's grace that we have been granted exceedingly great and precious promises, and that the IVs we might become partakers of the divine nature. In fact, Peter says that God's divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who has called us to his own glory and excellence, since we come to verse five. The text says for this very reason. Do this and these things to your faith furnish your faith with these supply supplement your faith in this way this morning. The title of my sermon was announced as faith alone. We say that phrase so often we just always say it like that. It and it made it sound like I would be affirming one of the reformers, solos, and I do affirm that but my title actually ends with a? Faith alone. James has warned us, you know that faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead, that we do not add anything to our salvation.

We are justified by faith alone in Christ alone.

By God's grace alone, and yet in this process of sanctification. Sanctification. We work we strive we seek and we are called to work toward that holiness which is ours in Christ, we are called in this text tonight to work at adding to our faith. These virtues that Peter lists for us to to furnish or supply our faith with these virtues that should be a part of the Christian life of Peter says, for this very reason. Add to your faith. What is this reason that he's pointing to hear this, of course, what he's already spoken of in the first four verses in the first part of verse five we are to add to our faith because we have received this like precious faith. This Scripture puts it, Peter is writing to believers to those who have received the gift of faith, the faith, the faith that the apostles have received in which they proclaim. This passage presents us with some dangers.

There are couple of dangers you. We often hear about the two ditches that we have to avoid their cup of ditches here.

First of all, there is the idea that we can somehow by working up these virtues in our lives we can make ourselves Christian wheat we can't do that we would have the I did some people have the idea that the teachings of the New Testament. Things like the sermon on the Mount. These are just great moral teaching and you and anybody can strive for these things and work things up in our lives. Reality is that nobody can live like this in their own power.

This is not something we can do this is something that only can be accomplished in the life of believer the other side of the coin is this idea that because salvation is by faith alone. It's all grace, that we can be passive and we don't have to work at it that we just let go and let God. But Peter has said no that even though God has given us all things are pertain to life and godliness and that he's granted us these great promises we have to do something to add to this life that we are living before him. He has given us these great promises by which we can become partakers of the divine nature. These are great promises because are made by a great God God whose word never fails their great promises because through them we can become partakers of the divine nature. There are aspects of God's nature that he has made as the theologian said communicable he can implant them in us and cause us to live in that way. There are things about God. Of course, that he cannot communicate to us. We never become immutable. We never did reach for where we don't change that is only true of God.

But we can become a partaker in the divine nature.

So why does if these things are granted to us in salvation.

Why is it that Peter admonishes us to add to our faith when working be done to consider with me then. First of all, tonight the scope of this task.

As we look at verses five through seven.

What is it mean to add to or to supplement our faith is in salvation all of grace from first to last is true that Christ is the author and the finisher, the beginner, the perfecter of our faith. And yet we are to add to our faith. These things that Peter speaks of here in this text without Christ is true we can do nothing and yet we are commanded to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling because it is God who really is at work in you both to will and to do his good pleasure. We are to strive to manifest to live out this new life that is ours in observable ways. What God has done in us we are to live out and work out through the power that he is given to us were to make every effort to supplement the faith. Verse five says for this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith. The King James uses the phrase, giving all diligence, add to your faith the idea of this word is one of of eagerness and haste energy and I my modern lingo, we might say something like, get with the program. This must be done and it must be done quickly. It has that sense of of eagerness and haste. The word was used in relation to the Greek theater, Greek theater and drama always have a chorus of associated with it and the person who was responsible for furnishing the chorus for filling out the chorus was this word was used to speak of that person's responsibility to furnish the course to fill it up. So what are we to address faith and in what ways are we to supplement our faith.

First of all, he says we are to add virtue. This word literally means manliness valor strength is the same word that is used up in verse three where it says that God has granted to us the things that pertain to life and godliness and that through his great promises that he is the one who has called us to his own glory and excellence. That word excellence is the same word. The word virtue, but this is something that speaks of strength and and valor in manliness and Lord Jones uses the term moral power moral energy. Our faith must be an active, vigorous, energetic faith. Now there's a danger here. Satan is always prowling around trying to devour us and destroy us. And so whenever we move toward God the character he tries to put a stop to it. He wants to move us in the opposite direction.

But as we are in Christ. He has difficulty that he can't turn this around and find us in Christ and and Christ in us, and so he tries to push us into extremes with regard to this idea of strength and valor and eagerness in our faith. Sometimes we enter into a perversion of what God desires of us.

Peter understood and understands as he uses this word, Peter was a man of action would look back over the New Testament, we would never describe Peter as passive. Peter was always on the move.

He acted on impulse, he was impetuous, even violent at times in his zeal to follow Christ. You remember his words on the Mount of Transfiguration when Christ was revealed to them in his glory.

And Peter said let's build tabernacles and Mark tells us that he didn't know what he did know what to say but he spoke anyway. Peter was always involved in active, he vowed that he would never forsake Christ and then he denied him three times. When they came to arrest Jesus in the garden. He lashed out with the sword cut off man's ear when the Lord resurrected Lord appeared to the disciples said on the Sea of Galilee. It was Peter who jumped in the water and swam to the shore.

Now, some 30 years later as he writes this letter that we hear this mature apostle speaking to us and pointing us to the need for our moral energy in our eagerness to be bridled with knowledge. That's the second thing that he says were to add to our faith. He's not speaking here just of the elementary knowledge that leads us to salvation, one translation puts this absolute knowledge or full knowledge of what is needed is his understanding and insight and enlightenment discernment that Paul gives a similar teaching in first Corinthians 14 versus brothers not be children in your thinking. But in your thinking be mature as a King James has it will be children in understanding, but in understanding man, we have to have knowledge and mature understanding and insight. Of course again here. There is a danger lurking. We need to grow in knowledge but there's a danger that knowledge will puff us up, become proud.

Love, on the other hand builds up and edifies our knowledge must be controlled by love and that of course is where the climax of this list is lands and we get to that last virtue where to add to our faith. It is that of love, Peter continues then and in this list by speaking of restraint, of holding ourselves in check, and the moral excellence in knowledge and understanding that are required are necessary if we are to exercise self-control.

You see how each of these virtue cities teaching us about here are related to one another. They build a lot of the value they overlap, they are dependent on each other's not just you know you you get virtue and then you add knowledge and then you can build it that way, but they're all connected. Their only sense were to have all of these all the time and grow and mature in all of them but when you first come to Christ. The exuberance of the newfound faith that the growing understanding of the riches of God's grace can sometimes lead us to rush ahead of God to act presumptuously to not have self-control trying to help gone out through our human methods and devices you remember Abraham and Sarah God promised a son, and they were impatient and attempted to accomplish God's promise and realize his promise of a son with their own plan and what a disaster that was what we do that so frequently we we think we know what God wants and when he wants and we tried it make it happen. This idea of restraint to which Peter calls us is a word that has to do with controlling our appetites. Paul uses the same word in regard to an athlete's training in the first Corinthians 9. He says every athlete exercises self-control in all things they do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. So I do not run aimlessly. I do not box as one beating the air, but I discipline my body and keep it under control list after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified postponing us to very important principle here that regarding the restraint of our appetites and our desires. He speaks of disciplining his body. The word literally refers to a slave driver.

We must discipline our body, the concept of mortifying sin, putting to death the old man the flash.

Paul writes to the Colossians and in chapter 3, put to death therefore what is earthly in you sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, covetousness which is idolatry. You must put away anger, wrath, malice, slander, scene talk from your mouth. Do not lie to one another saying that you've put off the old self with its practices and put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.

Our faith is to be vigorous and energetic, growing in knowledge that that's good, but it must be disciplined must be held down and wisely directed must be characterized next by steadfastness, steadfastness or perseverance is another way that word is translated and it's a word that means patient endurance and includes the idea of hope.

Waiting on what God has the word literally means to put yourself under and to remain under and it someone has said to find it is receiving difficult situations from God without giving him a timeframe for getting rid of it. It's patient endurance living in in that kind of patient endurance requires a stick to witness when I when I think of as stick to in this I am reminded of the conversation was going on in the family way back from Gen. assembly this week. We had a couple of man whose sanity you question a little bit because they run marathons, 26.2 miles of running for what reason them just to run just to finish but that kind of stick to goodness that's standing staying with us like the old man who was asked about how he viewed his life and he said I just want to keep on keeping on. I as a boy I had the privilege of handpicking cotton back in the day and I never was very good at it. I am a few occasions reached 100 pounds in a day. There was a lady in my hometown. That wasn't famous for her cotton picking that woman would take two sacks instead of one.

Like most of us and she would have a cycle each side should get a little bit in there and where he could sit and she was carrying two rows at the time to connect cotton, never fast, never pushing their hasting just steady from sunup to sundown and there were times when she would pick almost 300 pounds in a day. They were used to say she could pick a bail week by herself just steady staying with it persevering and that's necessary if you're going to live this kind of life, just that that biblical hope that is persevering because we're waiting, knowing that God will do what he has said and what he has said will come to pass, but if were going to live with that kind of of the patient endurance we have to have a mindset that is true if what he says in this next word we are to add to our faith. Godliness godliness this word in. In the Greek language is a compound word two words put together the first part of the word means good well it's the also the beginning of the word we use the Eucharist for Thanksgiving expression of gratitude, but here the word has to do with that idea of goodness or wellness and then the second part of the word has to do with reference Doering and revering God. Someone is translated it will revering always conscious of the fact that we are in the presence of God. I had often heard in since I became aware of reformed thinking and in writing so flat out run into this phrase: Dale didn't know where that came from and looking at this I discovered that this was John Calvin's motto Coram tail before God in the presence of God before the face of God always living with the conscious awareness that we live before God reminded this morning that Pastor Doug reminded us that God is always watching his eyes everywhere. There's nowhere to run. We are always in his presence, and we must live that conscious awareness that we are living before God. That's what godliness really is.

Then the system turns to our relationship with others and he speaks of brotherly kindness. The word is Philadelphia.

Most of us know that that's the word combines two Greek words, when it means love and the other brothers since Philadelphia is a city of brotherly love weird to have this sense of of family affection are brothers and sisters in Christ, if it reflects the tender affection of God himself. God's love is a tender, affectionate love you. Remember Jesus words as he looked on Jerusalem before his crucifixion.

How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wing. There is tenderness to the affection God has for us even in the Old Testament which so many people look at us and you, God.

There being a God of wrath, even there. God's care for his people as compared to that of a mother for her child thus says the Lord. Behold, I will extend peace to her like a river in the glory of the nations like an overflowing stream and you shall nurse you shall be carried upon her hip and bounced up on her knees as one whom his mother comforts so will I comfort you when we need to develop a tender, brotherly affection for God's people are brothers and sisters in Christ. There needs to be warmth and tenderness.

In fact, Paul uses that idea when he speaks to us in Ephesians and says that we are to be tenderhearted, kind, forgiving toward one another and by the way I was taught a few years back that kindness is not just the absence of meanness. It's an active, positive, tender treatment toward others. We need to develop that kind of brotherly affection and then he comes to the climax of the list with the final virtue that we are to address faith, love, we must come to love not only brothers and sisters in Christ.

Even our enemies. Christ says we are to love with a self-sacrificing love kind of love that we've received in Jesus. You remember how Jesus said that the whole law hangs on this idea. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment.

And the second is like it you shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the law and the prophets. So Peter calls for brotherly affection toward God's people, and then he adds this copy godlike love for everyone that's our dear everyone remember what Paul says in Romans 13 80. No man anything except to love one another all your member.

He wrote to Timothy, and in the first chapter that first letter similar in verse five that the that name. The goal that all is an unfeigned love love out of a pure heart miss the climax of footwear to add to our faith.

So we've looked at. The reason that we are to add these things to her faith he looked at the scope of it and tried to define it a little bit. So what is the outcome of that.

What is the fruit of this onset part of that already but not yet kind of thing. This is who we are. This is ours in Christ.

In fact, as we read this in the in the ESV Paul says in verse eight.

If these qualities are yours and increasing speaking as if it is almost more than since these are yours. They are ours in Christ and yet there's and if are we actually adding these things. Are we building this intra-life are we making this a part of who we are.

If these things are in you and their growing and increasing then they will keep you from being ineffective, unfruitful from being unproductive or useless as another translation that these things are what keep you from being a useless Christian make us productive, make us fruitful goes on to say. Then in verse nine that whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he's blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins. It's interesting that he changes from saying you in verse eight to the one who anyone is not accusing them and sustaining fact if this is not true. Love you and your blind you forgotten what God is done for you. Once us back again to the fact that it's because of what God has done for us in Jesus Christ were to live like this where to add these things so enclosing the MAI in what I hope is a tender love pose some questions and like Peter, I'm not trying to be judgmental or accusatory wants to ask ourselves these questions and maybe there'll encourage us to growth and to improvement.

Where do we stand is our faith, full of vigor and energy and moral excellence on a scale of 1 to 10 how is your knowledge of Jesus Christ just starting kindergarten biblical scholar somewhere in between. And what are you doing about where you are to move further up the scale to add knowledge, how well are you doing at restraining fleshly desires. Flesh ever rise up and you you exhibit attitudes even say words do things that do not express the love that Christ is shown us.

Do you live each day and the conscious awareness that you're in the presence of God living before his face do my brothers and sisters since in the and affection for them of brotherly love did I know that I love them brothers and sisters we can do this. God has given us everything that is needed for life and godliness is called us to his own glory and excellence, and so for this very reason we are to make every effort to supplement our faith with virtue, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, affection and love. Would to God that our faith would not be without works is dead faith, we would diligently make every effort to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ, by the way, that's a theme in second Peter he talks about it three or four times in the first chapter and over in chapter 3's is it is a final kind of admonition but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ may be true of us is for you have given us all the things that we need for life of godliness you've given us your spirit to empower us to inform us to enlighten us by your grace.

You have saved us from the corruption that is in the world and you have given us promises that make it possible for us to become partakers of your own nature, may we be a body that exhibits this and we grow an increase in this world around us would see and know that we serve the one true living God, thank you for your failing love for your abundant grace for your everlasting mercy. We pray in Jesus name, amen


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