2 Peter 1:2-4 – Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
When I was in high school, I was part of the track and field team. My events were called field events; shot put and discus throw. Though each point of competition required only seconds of personal action, each one required a process if I was to be in any way truly competitive. There were members of our team who competed in track events that could take anywhere from a few seconds to several minutes, and long-distance runners may even have taken hours to finish their event. While each competitive endeavor was called an event, process was still involved. Running in the 440-yard hurdles did not happen suddenly. It took some time, or process, one step after another, one hurdle after another, crossing the finish line ONLY have completing all the steps. 2 Peter 1:5 tells us, “giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue.” Remember, at each step of this process, we are to apply “all diligence.” There is never a time to save strength for the next step, or to use less diligence at certain points. This is an “all diligence” process at every point. So, apply “all diligence” to add to your faith “virtue.”
When the woman with the issue of blood touched Jesus’s garments, He perceived that virtue had gone out of Him. In that instance, the word virtue is the Greek word “dunamis,” meaning “fierce, miraculous power; mighty working; miracle violence.” This is the power of God that one receives when filled with Holy Ghost. But in our study today, virtue in 2 Peter 1:5 is the Greek word “arete,” meaning “manliness, valor, and excellence.” While “dunamis” is power that comes only from God, and cannot be produced by man, “arete” is the character of a person that is developed over time through diligent process. Consider the following three statements:
- You’re a male by birth (You had nothing to do with your gender; that is genetics).
- You’re a man by choice (You have everything to do with your personal identification; that is choice).
- You’re a son of God by the grace and power of God (You are who God made you to be; that is divine).
You have dunamis-virtue solely by the hand of God. You have arete-virtue by your own choice of diligent application of Godly principles. If you don’t give diligence to develop it, you would have it.
Manna for Today – 2 Peter 1:1-15; Proverbs 4:20-23; Joshua 1:6-9; Deuteronomy 28:1-14; 3 John 2; Jeremiah 29:11