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Foundations for Fruit Bearing

Mike Connell

Page 3 of 10
There's a thing called the cross; about learning to walk in what God wants for you; so we have a real danger, if we look to the world to direct how we run our life, we'll end up missing what God has purposed for us. Now let's come to 2 Peter, Chapter 1. Here it is: Now Simon - Verse 1 - Simon Peter, a bond servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, said: those who've obtained, like precious faith with us, by the righteousness of our God and Saviour Jesus Christ - that's us. See, Peter the apostle, speaking to us, who have got like faith. We believe in Jesus, okay? Verse 2: Grace and peace be multiplied to you, through the knowledge of God and our Lord Jesus Christ; and then He says: as this divine power given to us, everything that pertains to life and Godliness, through the knowledge of Him, who called us by glory and virtue, by whom we've been given exceeding great and precious promise, that through these you may become partakers of His divine nature, having escaped the corruption that's in the world through lust.

So he's saying: this is a message for believers. This is for people who've been born again. This is a message for people who are coming to grow in their knowledge of God. He says: I want you to notice very carefully what I have to say to you. He says this in Verse 5 through to 11: Also for this very reason, because of what you're called to be and do, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, perseverance to Godliness, Godliness to brotherly kindness, to brotherly kindness, love.

Now, He tells us to add something into your life. These are all qualities of character. This is about the kind of person you are. Then He says: for - and He gives reasons for it - if these things are yours, and abound in you - now notice this - they will ensure you are not barren or unfruitful. Now if I could say to you: listen, I can guarantee to you, that you will be not barren and unfruitful; neither will you fail and fall, if you put certain things into your life; you would want to do those things. Well He's listed them here, so they're not so hard to understand. So here it is - and you notice there's some things that He tells us about it: to make sure that you'll neither be barren or unfruitful, in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who lacks these things is short-sighted, and even to blindness; has forgotten he's cleansed from his old sins; so be diligent - there's the word diligent again. Verse 5 - diligent. Verse 10 - diligent.

Why should you be diligent to put them in? Because it's all about the call of God, and His selection for the kingdom, so He says: really be diligent. Twice He tells you: be diligent; and then He says: be diligent to make your calling election sure; if you do these things, you'll never stumble, and an abundant entrance will be supplied to you, into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ. He goes on to describe what that will be like a little later. Let's pick the passage up now.

So notice what he's saying here: add - or the word literally, add; be diligent to add to yourself. Now that word means to thoroughly furnish your house, so can you imagine having an empty house. Empty house is not a very great place to live in. You know, you've got a hard floor, you've got nothing to eat with; and he's saying: furnish your house thoroughly. Now you are the house, and he's saying: furnish it with certain kinds of things. Then He lists the things to furnish it with, and let's have a look what you are called to furnish your life with - and every one of us is called to do this. He says: add to your faith.

You can't put these things into your life by attending a prayer meeting. You can't put these things into your life by attending a Bible Study. You can only put these things in your life, as you do what God called you to do. They are things you develop in your life, that ensure what you're doing is productive and fruitful, and qualifies for reward; so all that God calls us to do, and whatever we're going to be doing, here's a grid to look at and see: how am I operating? What is showing up in my life, as I do these things? And you'll see they're quite easy to look at, quite easy to deal with. Nothing in God is complicated, so let's see what we're called to add, or develop, as we serve people.