When we are born again it is for the purpose to live the God kind of life. A new life full of the grace of God that brings the kingdom of heaven unto earth. In this new life we must train and discipline our body for the sake of God’s glory because this is our act of worship (Romans 12:1-2). Now is the time to learn the activities of heaven that grow us to maturity!
2 Peter 1:1-11, “1 Simon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who through the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ have received a faith as precious as ours: 2 Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.
3 His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. 4 Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.
5 For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; 6 and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; 7 and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. 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. 9 But whoever does not have them is nearsighted and blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their past sins.
10 Therefore, my brothers and sisters, make every effort to confirm your calling and election. For if you do these things, you will never stumble, 11 and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”
(1) SPIRITUAL GROWTH = KNOWING & SHOWING
- SPIRITUAL GROWTH: The process of transformation by which the disciple increases in their knowledge of God and show it by living holy.
- KNOWING (FAITH): Faith (the substance of things hoped and the evidence of things not seen) is the gift of God which is given to all who willing receive the Word of God (Ephesians 2:8 & 2 Peter 1:1).
- GROWING (FAITH’S SEVEN ADDITIONS): The seven qualities that our faith should have in an increasing measure that make us effective and productive in our faith and keeping us from stumbling.
- Goodness: Be good according to the Bible.
- Knowledge: Continually study the Word of God.
- Self-Control: Be addicted to nothing earthly.
- Perseverance: Never give up.
- Godliness: Live like Jesus.
- Mutual Affection (Brotherly Love): Treat others like yourself.
- Love: Follow sacrificial love, not selfishness or hatred.
(2) SPIRITUAL GROWTH AS EASY AS 1-2-3!
- BELIEVE WHO JESUS IS: Our God and Savior, 2 Peter 1:1-2.
- BELIEVE WHO YOU ARE: A partaker in the divine nature, 2 Peter 1:3-4.
- BELIVE WHAT YOU CAN DO: Increase in the seven attributes of faith (goodness, knowledge, etc.) and never stumble, 2 Peter 1:5-11.
(3) TWO CLARIFICATIONS OF SPIRITUAL GROWTH
- MADE RIGHTEOUS TO ACT RIGHTEOUS: As a Christian you’re not growing to become a better person but rather learning to act like the person God has already made you, Ephesians 2:10.
- FIRST COMES BEING, THEN COMES DOING: Your spiritual sanctification (holy “being”) came first at salvation so you can have continual behavioral transformation (holy “doing”), 1 Corinthians 6:11.
10 SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINES
- Bible Reading
- Family Order
- Scripture Memorization
- Soul Journaling
- Praying & Worshipping
- Christian Service
- Public Evangelism
- Spiritual Meditation
- Financial Stewardship
1 Corinthians 9:24-27, “24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. 25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 26 Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. 27 No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.”
- Run your race to win, v. 24.
- Make strict training and discipline apart of your life, v. 25.
- Hit your target, don’t just beat the air, v. 26.
- Make your body your slave, v. 27.
THE GRACE OF GOD IN DISCIPLINE & TRAINING
1 Corinthians 15:10, “But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them- yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me.”
- God’s grace wholly surrounds the disciple in spiritual growth.
- It is by grace the disciple is saved, sanctified, and spiritual grows, Galatians 3:3.
I worked harder than all of them- yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me!