Everything we will ever need in life God has already given to us. We already have all the spiritual life and godliness we need. He gives us these promises right through the word of God. He has called us unto His own glory — not to glorify ourselves, but to glorify Him. This is called “virtue.” In a Biblical context, the term “virtue” can mean “raw power” or “moral excellence.” In this context, it is the latter.
God does everything bigger and larger than life. He is also highly descriptive in his word.
1. The promises of God give us power, protection and purity. There are some 16,000 promises from God throughout the Bible. And not one of them will ever fail. The promises of God will always stand no matter the circumstances here in the world.
How are we translated from death into spiritual life? We have a divine God who dwells in us. This is one of the promises of God. God says we can take part in His divine nature. Everything we know about God comes from Scripture. Our understanding of God is not based on our feelings. We know we are saved because of Scripture, not because we always “feel” saved.
In verse 4, the writer uses the phrase “escaped the corruption.” Indeed, God rescues us from the world’s corruption. He has protected us. In fact, He has protected us in ways we don’t even know yet.
We can still live for God in this present world. We can live pure because we have the purity of God, and God promises that we can live godly in a wicked and perverted generation.
2. Addition + subtraction = multiplication. As we add certain things (godliness) to our lives and subtract other things (sin) from our lives, then God does the multiplication for all sorts of things in our lives. In other words, we are to live in the world but not be of the world.
In verse 5, the writer instructs, “Add to your faith virtue.” In addition, we are to add knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness and charity.
One of the reasons for all the debauchery in our society is that the church is just plain dumb regarding the Scripture. People are starved for truth because churches aren’t preaching truth.
You have to be able to contain yourself and exercise discipline.
We can’t even think about being godly until we are patient, and before that, self-controlled, and before that, knowledgeable, and before that, morally excellent. Then we can finally show brotherly kindness and charity.
Acceptance and approval are two different things. We will accept anyone, but we cannot approve what isn’t Biblical.
When we add all these things to our lives, then we can get God’s multiplication (next week’s message).