Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Making Every Effort-Knowledge

2 Peter 1:5 For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith, goodness and to goodness, KNOWLEDGE.

Knowledge: acquaintance with facts, truths, or principles, as from study or investigation

So, how do we add knowledge to our faith? Making every effort to add knowledge to our faith does require us to bend our normal rhythm of the day to attain knowledge of God. I would love knowledge to just transfer by osmosis but unfortunately, that is not how it works. Here are the things that i do on a weekly basis to add knowledge and i would invite you to join me in these things.

1. Read the bible. If you dont know where to start, read a chapter out of Proverbs and a chapter out of John beginning with chapter 1.
2. Podcast biblical based teachers: My ipod has these teachers: Frances Chan, Rob Bell, Andy Stanley. I am also about to start listening to Matt Chandler.
3. Memorize scritpure: one verse a week.

These are good places to start when it comes to adding Knowledge to our Faith. As we make this effort, know that God will honor your effort as you depend on him to give you knowledge through these sources.

Have a great day...see you soon.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Making Every Effort

Hello Everyone...what a day at New Community yesterday. We wrapped up "the Exchange" teaching series and as promised, I wanted to give some more insight to our teaching text each day this week.

If you are just now joining in, our series has been about how we can exchange death for life through Jesus and also experience the "full" life he says is possible even though we live in a broken world.

Yesterday we jumped in to 2 Peter 1:3-9, spending time understanding how verses 5-7 shake out in our life.

2 Peter 1:3-9
3His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. 4Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.
5For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; 6and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; 7and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. 8For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins.

Add to your faith...goodness. Yesterday we discussed how goodness basically means moral excellence, in other words doing the right thing. The New American Commentary by Thomas R. Schreiner says this about adding Goodness and this verse:
"Believers are to "add too" or supply with (epichoregesate) their faith "goodness" (arete). In Greek culture a benefactor (choregos) funished what was necessary for choruses. Those who did such were known as generous and lavish benefactors. The word (arete), probably translated "moral excellence," was used in 1:3 to designate by what God has called believers. God's call, we argued, is effective. He creates the moral excellence he demands. Hence, it follows that the moral excellence of believers can only be attributed to God's grace. And yet New Testament writters never polarize divine sovereignty and human responsibilty. Those whom God has effectively called to virtue are also to practice virtue with energy and intensity."

We see here that God, who calls us and saves us, is the one who suppliess the goodness. At the end of the day, our role is to simply bend our effort toward letting this goodness reign in our life. Taking the time to acknowledge that it comes from God and giving him permission to unleash this in our lives.

We all know when we are in a situation or circumstance where temptation to live outside of God's will and way's is pressing in on us. In that moment, with every bit of energy you have, yeild to the power of God within you and allow him to allow goodness to come rushing forth.

Adding goodness to our faith, will allow us to experience life the way God intends.

Let's make every effort today.