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Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2:15

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2 Peter 1:1-15
(Only read verses 8-15 – Draw the congregations attention to the repeated phrase "these things.")
Intro: Who among us tonight would like to be known as a failure in the Christian life? That’s a pretty stupid question isn’t it? After all, who wants to fail? The truth is, every one of us wants to be a successful Christian and we really want to bring glory and honor to God. Even today, we see it all around us. Some preacher will fall, or a good church member will get out of God’s will. It happens all the time and far too often.
Peter gives us the secret to Godly living. We are going to see some steps that if taken, will ensure our success as Christians. As we go through these verses this evening, let’s notice these 7 Steps Toward Godly Living.

I. v. 8-11 THE SPOILS
(Here is a list of what "these things", whatever they are, will produce in your life.)
A. v. 8 "These Things" Guarantee Your Fruitfulness – If "these things" are found in your life, then you will never be barren, but you will always be a fruitful branch for God’s glory. This implies that you will be a witness and a soul winner for Jesus. Whatever "these things" are, they must be pretty great because they promise us that we will always bear fruit.
B. v. 9a These Things Guarantee Spiritual Discernment – Many people have absolutely no spiritual discernment. They are blind and easily lead astray, Eph. 4:14. But, when "these things" are active in our lives, we will be able to see the tricks, traps and temptations of the Devil. We will be able to see the needs of others and not be blinded by our own selfish interests. We won’t ever be blind and in spiritual darkness ever again. I don’t know about you, but whatever "these things" are, I want to know about them!
C. v. 9b These Things Guarantee You Absolute Assurance Of Salvation - Many people are so over come with their doubts that are of no use to the Lord. Evidently, they lack "these things." Because, "these things" promise us that we can have assurance of salvation. They promise us that we can get to the place where we never doubt again! I tell you, "these things" must really be something!
D. v. 10 These Things Guarantee That You Will Never Fall Again – This verse says plainly that "these things", if practiced in our lives, will ever keep us from falling. How many have fallen as a Christian? Every single one of us has fallen from time to time. But, "these things" promise us a fall free life.

II. v. 5-7 THE STEPS
A. v. 5 Virtue – ("Moral uprightness"; "Holiness") This word literally means "Excellent living." In one word, God is telling you and me that if we will live by the Bible and live morally pure lives, then He will guarantee those 4 invaluable gifts we talked about earlier.
B. v. 5 Knowledge – (Literally "an understanding of the truth and how to live it out.") This word is telling us that we can have all those things we discovered by having a sound knowledge of the doctrines of Christianity and by applying them to our lives and living them out.
1. We are to get into the Word – 2 Tim. 2:15.
2. We are to let the Word get into us – Jer. 15:16; 1 Pet. 2:2)
C. v. 6 Temperance – This word means "self-control." It implies that I do not do as I please, I control myself and do as the Lord pleases!
(Ill. This is one of the fruit of the Spirit Gal. 5:23.)
1. Our Tongues – (Gossip and telling another person off) Some people are doubting their salvation, being unfruitful, falling into sin, and have no spiritual discernment because they cannot control their tongues!
2. Our Tempers – (Flying off the handle, getting mad and getting even.) Some people lack the blessings because they cannot control their temper. Temper can get you into big trouble! (Eph. 4:26) (Never think that holding a grudge, or trying to get even will help you. When you do these things, you have assumed the place of God – Rom. 12:19)
3. Our Temptations – Ill. Everyone is tempted – 1 Cor. 10:13. However, not everyone falls into sin! The difference is self-control!
Many people are experiencing a lack of those four great blessings simply because they have no self-control!
D. v. 6 Patience – (Endurance) The patient person is the one not swerved from his devotion to God even by the greatest of trials. Many are suffering from the loss of the four great blessings just because they allow the slightest little wind to blow them off course. The patient person is one who has endurance.
E. v. 6 Godliness – This word literally means, "Walking in view of His greatness." It has reference to the person who has every action and attitude yielded to the fear of the Lord. This person spends his life in a state of "God-like-ness." He spends his days serving God and serving men.
F. v. 7 Brotherly Kindness – (filadelfia – Literally, just plain old brotherly love.) If Christians would practice the second Great Commandment, Matt. 22:39, then they would experience those four great blessings that we all want so badly.
G. v. 7 Charity – (agaph – Love!) He is referring to that self-sacrificing, never-ending, all-encompassing love that Jesus exhibited when He came to the earth to die for sin.
1. To always be fruitful.
2. To always have spiritual discernment.
3. To never doubt my salvation.
4. To never fall as a Christian.

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First Baptist Church of Barberville 137 East Broad St. PO Box 97, Barberville, FL 32112 * 386-749-3928