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Wednesday, October 2, 2019

2 Peter, Day 2: 2 Peter 1:2-4 - How Precious and Great are God's Promises?

How Precious and Great are God's Promises?



May 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 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.


- 2 Peter 1:2-4, ESV

Growing up, I used to love watching The Price is Right, especially on days when I was home sick from school. My favorite part of The Price is Right was the Showcase Showdown. I especially loved the really big showcases where they kept revealing more and more items, usually capped off by a new car or some incredible trip somewhere. Later in life, when I was waiting tables, I would sometimes wind down by watching late-night infomercials, which would always add more to the deal they were offering by saying, "But wait, there's more!"

Not to be irreverent and compare God's word to a late-night infomercial or a game show, but sometimes, when I think about the Gospel, it hits me that it's the ultimate prize package: Just when we think we've heard it all - forgiveness of our sins, eternal life, no condemnation - God seems to say, "But wait, there's more!"

Last time, we looked at the incredible reality that we stand on the same ground before God as the Apostles, because we are all standing on the perfect righteousness of Jesus Christ. Today, we read on in 2 Peter 1 and discover still more wonderful Gospel treasure:

First, we find out that God multiplies grace and mercy to us in the knowledge of God and of Christ Jesus. This means that God continually pours out His undeserved favor and kindness, His patience and love, as we grow in the knowledge of Him. We don't just receive grace and mercy one time at the moment of coming to faith in Jesus, but grace and mercy multiply to us throughout our lives.

Second, we learn that God's "divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness." This means that God has already given us everything we need for real eternal life and a life of true godliness. We already have all we need! 

And third, we see that "He has granted to us His precious and very great promises, so that through them [we] may become partakers of the divine nature." The purpose of God's precious and very great promises are that we may partake of His very nature. This is almost too good to be true - God has not only allowed us to stand before Him on the perfect righteousness of Christ and multiplied His grace and mercy to us, and He has not only granted us everything we need for life and godliness, but He has done this by promising us that we will be partakers of the divine nature. 

In other words, through faith in Jesus Christ, not only are we forgiven, cleansed and accepted by God, but God gives Himself to us, so that we can partake of His very life, His eternal life. The eternal life we're given is the very life of God. The perfect righteousness we're given is the very righteousness of God. This is a grace so amazing that we won't even begin to grasp the depth of the riches of it in this life. 

So often, when you watch a TV game show or a late-night infomercial, you find out that the deal promised isn't really as good as it seems. After all, the game show is just after high ratings, and the infomercial is just trying to sell a product. But God is no salesman, and the Gospel is no gimmick. The promises God makes, He keeps to the full. And that makes His promises precious and very great indeed!    

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