SPIRITUAL GROWTH TAKES HARD WORK
The more you grow like this, the more productive and useful you will be in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But those who fail to develop in this way are shortsighted or blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their old sins.
So, dear brothers and sisters, work hard to prove that you really are among those God has called and chosen. Do these things, and you will never fall away. Then God will give you a grand entrance into the eternal Kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (2 Peter 1:8–11).
The apostle Peter says God has given you a specific way to grow that will make you productive and useful in your knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. This means it is possible to grow in knowledge but not be productive and useful.
Many Christians have a lot of Bible knowledge. They can argue various kinds of theology and will willingly split their churches to hold onto certain principles. Yet they don’t possess any power or show any fruit in their lives. James says that they are merely hearers of God’s Word and that they are deceived (James 1:22). A person can have great knowledge of God yet live as deceived as someone God never saved and cleansed from sin.
If you respond to the promises of God, you will be productive. Peter says you must work hard at this growth. Just as getting in shape physically requires hard work but promises results, so spiritual growth requires hard work but also promises results. The apostle Paul describes his spiritual training as more than just doing something and hoping for the best. He says we must train as intensely and purposefully as athletes (1 Corinthians 9:25–27).
The whole reason that an athlete trains for physical fitness is to win a prize that will fade away. But the reason that you train for spiritual fitness is to win an eternal prize. The apostle Peter says, “Then God will give you a grand entrance into the eternal Kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 1:11 NLT). We want that grand entrance into the eternal Kingdom where we get to stand before our Lord Jesus Christ.
Copyright © 2017 by Phillip Hunter