“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,” (2 Peter 1:3 ESV)
There are times when I wonder if I am less than what God would have me be. Perhaps I am not as holy as either He, or I, would like. Is it because God has shortchanged me and not blessed me as He has others?
The short answer to my questions, and perhaps yours if you have ever felt the same way, is no. 2 Peter 1:3 indicates that every believer, including myself, has everything God has given for life and godliness. Let’s look at today’s verse in detail.
Peter began by saying to his audience that God’s divine power has granted every believer all things. The word divine (θεῖος; theios) refers to God’s exclusive nature and being. Power (δύναμις; dynamis) refers to God’s exclusive supernatural deeds and work. Peter wrote that God alone works through His holy nature on behalf of believers.
On this basis, God has granted to believers all things. The word granted (δωρέομαι; doreomai) means to give and bestow. Within this context, God alone gives and bestows to every Christian everything that relates to life and godliness.
The word life (ζωή; zoe) concerns spiritual vitality. Godliness (εὐσέβεια; eusebeia) is about godly living and personal piety. In other words, God has given believers in Christ everything they ever need in order to live a spiritual and godly life while on this earth.
What, or rather who, is the means by which believers can attain this spiritual and godly life for which God has given us His divine power? The answer should not surprise anyone. It is none other than the Lord Himself. It is only through the knowledge (ἐπίγνωσις; epignosis), or content, of what is definitely known of God alone that life and godliness is available.
Dr. John Walvoord explains that, “Divine” translates theias, which is from theos (“God”) and is used only three times in the New Testament (here and in Acts 17:29; 2 Peter 1:4). “Power” (dynameōs) is one of Peter’s favorite words (cf. 1 Peter 1:5; 3:22; 2 Peter 1:16; 2:11). All that believers need for spiritual vitality (life) and godly living (eusebeian, “godliness,” “piety”; cf. comments on 1:6; 3:11) is attainable through our knowledge of Him (Christ). An intimate “full knowledge” (epignōseōs; cf. 1:2) of Christ is the source of spiritual power and growth (cf. Phil. 1:9; Col. 1:9–10; 2:2).”
This knowledge is solely from the One, True God who alone called (καλέω; kaleo) sinners into a new relationship with Him by grace alone, through faith alone in the person and work of Jesus Christ alone.
God alone has called and summoned each believer to His own glory (δόξα; doxa) or splendor and excellence (ἀρετή; arête) which means His outstanding goodness. This is what God has created you and me to be.
I am not an uncommon individual in God’s perspective. He has summoned me, and other believers in Christ, to pursue excellence and outstanding goodness which originates from God Himself. What a privilege, honor and responsibility.
Dr. Walvoord states that, “Christ called (cf. 1 Peter 1:15) us to this life of godliness by His own glory and goodness (aretē, “moral excellence”; trans. “praises” in 1 Peter 2:9 and “goodness” in 2 Peter 1:5). Christ attracts people enslaved by sin (cf. 2:19) by His own moral excellence and the total impact of His glorious Person.”
Think about how important you are to God that He would set His love upon you. Our response to such love and grace is moral excellence and outstanding goodness. We pursue these virtues not to attain God’s love and grace but rather as a response of gratitude because of God’s love and grace. This is as life truly worth living.
May the Lord’s truth and grace be found here.
Soli deo Gloria!