Life is tough. How can God expect us to live like He asks us to live? Too many of us have a testimony of frustration over our own inability to live life the way God asks.
Peter instructs us that God does in fact expect us to live righteously in this world. (Therefore, beloved, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless. 3:14). BUT — HE DOES NOT STOP THERE! HE ACTUALLY TELLS US HOW THIS IS POSSIBLE – BY MEANS OF GOD’S POWER!
Living righteously in a wicked world (in any age) is only possible through a power that is greater than that of the world — God’s Power and this is the subject of our text in 1 Peter 1:3.
So let’s learn about this power.
The Truth Regarding His Power 1:3 (It Delivers and Enables Men)
as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue,
The Source and Nature of this Power
“As His divine power”
Source — God (specifically Christ). The power is God’s and He has made it available to us. We can live righteously in a world as wicked as this one because the power comes from none other than Jesus Christ, the Creator.
We see His power best in the account of His Ministry:
- Man with leprosy covering his body was healed
- Blind Man was healed
- Widow’s son was raised
- Lazarus was raised
Nature — Divine (out of his power)
Not just the power of a good example, instruction, or mandate. It is real power —that comes right out of His divine nature. This power — out of His divine power — has given us everything we need to live righteously.
As we grow up, we are well aware of Satan and his power. Sometimes our respect and fear of Satan is greater that our respect and fear of God. On the level of power, who is the opposite of Satan?Many would say “God,” but we must realize that Satan is a created being, his closest opposite is likely Michael the archangel.
The Reason For and the Amount of this Power
All things that pertain to life and godliness
What is this power for? — life and godliness
Life — a reference to eternal life Jn. 17:3 “And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.”
It is having a relationship with Christ.
His power gave… (Jn 3:16).
For one to be saved, there must be a deep realization that the situation they are in is dangerous and that they need help.
If someone comes up to you and begins treating you as thought you are choking when you are not, you will probably punch them in the nose. If, however, you really are choking, you will be extremely grateful to anyone who will reach out and help you.
We are all “choking” to death in sin. Only when we realize our problem, will we desire and be grateful for Christ’s dying in our place to save us.
Isa 64:6 But we are all like an unclean thing, And all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags; We all fade as a leaf, And our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.
When we understand the distance between our sin and God’s holiness, it makes His work on the cross a greater act.
His power loved
Rom 5:8 God demonstrated His love toward us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Once we are aware of our desperate condition, we can start looking for something or someone to rescue us.
Acts 4:12 And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
Jn 14:6 – Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me.
“Jesus Christ” – “Promised Savior”
His blood on the cross satisfied the required punishment for our sin. The power of God has provided everything you need to be saved.
Godliness — word for godliness or piety — means living in such a way that pleases God (makes God’s smile). The overall idea when the two words are joined together is a Christian Life that pleases God — a godly, holy life.
The power of God has also provided everything we need to live a godly life anywhere He places us in this world.
How much power has He given? — all things that pertain
God has given us everything that is necessary for living a life that pleases him. So, in practical terms, we have everything we need to have godly families, marriages, lives, and churches!
The Availability and Accessibility of this Power
Through the knowledge of Him that called us by glory and virtue. Availability — has given to us. In the perfect tense — this is a permanent gift (salvation and godliness). Lavish gift — the word here is unusual. Not just the word for a gift but the term one would use to describe a royal grant or imperial gift.
God has made a very lavish gift available — all things that pertain to salvation and living a godly life. It will never run out. This gift is out of His divine power — it is able and sufficient and it is permanently available to any believer no matter how wicked the world is around him!
Accessibility — through the knowledge of him. There is just one catch — there is only one way to access this power — through Jesus Christ. That is through a personal relationship with Christ, a relationship that is more than just head knowledge and information but a daily growing relationship with Christ! It begins with knowing Him personally as the one who saved you. How do you think of God when you think of Him?
If I show you a picture of my wife Rachel, you will be able to point her out in a crowd and say, “I know who she is.” This is informational knowledge. However, you don’t “know” her like I do. I know what makes her happy; I know what makes her sad. I know what kind of flowers she likes and what kind of holiday she enjoys. I know when her mouth is set a certain way that we will need to have a “discussion” later on. I KNOW Rachel.
“Know” in this verse is not informational, it is relational. This is the word we are talking about that is the means of this power. How did I get to know Rachel so well? It take time spent with the person to get this kind of knowledge. To get to know Jesus Christ, we must spend time in the Word of God. This is how we get this power to live the way He wants, knowing Him. What makes Him happy? What makes Him sad?
Without this relationship don’t be surprised if you can’t win against sin. Your leaf fades if you are not daily building your relationship with God.
So let’s draw this to a conclusion: God has given us everything we need to live a righteous life in a wicked world. That provision is powerful — backed by His divine power — and it is our permanent possession (perfect tense.)
It is also sufficient — everything we need! But it is only available if you come to a place where you know that you need a Savior. A time when you have repented or turned your back on your normal way of life and you want Christ to save you from it.
But it is only available as we grow in our personal daily relationship with Jesus Christ.
The strength of God’s power to live a godly life is equal to the strength of our relationship with Jesus Christ. So, if we are not growing in our daily relationship with Christ, we should not be surprised when the world and wickedness overpowers our lives.
Notes adapted from Dr. Sam Horn’s class on II Peter in Zambia 2006
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