Christ empowers us to live godly.
Read 2 Peter 1:1-8
“His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness.”
Undoubtedly the Christian life is difficult. Daily we are confronted with the challenge of living a life of faith where our focus is upon God rather than the overwhelming challenges that face us. If dealing with the struggles of daily life were not enough, we also deal with the struggles of our own sinfulness. It is no wonder that Paul writes that “we have this treasure (i.e., the gospel) in earthen vessels” (2 Corinthians 4:7). In writing to Timothy, in complete openness and honesty, he confesses that he is the foremost sinner of all (1 Timothy 1:15). It does not take long in our Christian life to fully realize how weak and powerless we are in our attempt to live in obedience to Christ. Daily we struggle to become what God intends, and yet for all our efforts, we know that we fall repeated short of his standard.
However, Christ has not left us to flounder along, struggling to maintain our spiritual walk but destined to failure because of our own spiritual feebleness. In 2 Peter 1, Peter reminds us that God, in His infinite power, has given us everything we need for life and godliness. Through his divine enablement, we have received everything we need to live a godly life. This is the hope and confidence of the Christian. While we are powerless in ourselves to withstand the temptations of sin and to live holy lives, through the power of God, we can now resist temptation, forsake sin, and pursue a life of holiness. Yet, despite his enablement, we still struggle. This brings us to the paramount question, “How do we avail ourselves of this power so that we can have victory in our Christian life?” Peter provides the answer in the following verses.
First, we are empowered by God through our knowledge of him (verse 3). God has created us to reflect his image, and he saved us to be transformed into the image of Christ. Therefore, the more we know of him and his character, the more we will reveal his character in our life. We cannot become what we do not know. To be transformed to be like Christ, we need to become students of Christ.
Second, we are empowered by God through the knowledge of his word (verse 4). Through the promises and teachings of scripture, we discover both the means and the perspective necessary to become partakers of the divine nature. The scriptures are more than mere information about God; they are transformational words that penetrate our inward being and change our character (Hebrews 4:12). When we read the Bible, God utilizes his word to bring change into our life effectively.
Third, we are empowered by God when we change our life and conduct to conform to his standard of righteousness. The more we allow Him to change us, the more we will be empowered to change. This begins with a prayer asking God to do what we cannot doll—change our life and our character.
Today, ask Christ to give you the strength to be the person he desires you to be and then read his word to discover his will.