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You Are Well Known [3-10-24]




March 10, 2024

2 Peter 1:3-7

“You Are Well Known”


Last week we began to look at the beautiful life we have in Jesus Christ. Today we’re going to build on that.


Let’s start with John 10:10:

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.”

What kind of life did Jesus say he came to bring us? Abundant. Not a little bit or an ebb-and-flow or a rationed life. But life in all its abundance. As John 1:16 says, “For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.”


That’s the foundational teaching from Jesus out of which 2 Peter 1:3-4 grows.


Let’s read it again:

His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.

Additionally, this section, in the ESV, has the heading, Confirm Your Calling and Election.


To get at what it means to say, His divine power granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, let’s get some direction from 1 Corinthians 3:21-23:

So let no one boast in men. For all things are yours, whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or the present or the future - all are yours, and you are Christ's, and Christ is God's.

What do you hear in that? What is Paul saying about God? He is saying that it is in God’s nature to be generous. It doesn’t matter who you are or where you are or what you do. In Christ, all things belong to you. All things 

are yours.


Paul and his marvelous teachings belong to you. Apollos and his leadership abilities belong to you. Peter and his overcoming of mistakes belongs to you. Things now and things to come belong to you. Life and death belong to you.


We possess whatever God possesses and whatever Christ possesses. Why did God make the world? To display is glory. Who did God make the world for? He made the world for us. We possess life in all its fullness…spiritual life, material life, eternal life in Christ. All of it is ours. All of it. The good… the bad…and the ugly, they all work together for good for those who are called according to God’s purpose. That includes things to come. Are you with me on that? We possess eternity with Christ. Already. Already we possess our eternal reward.


We belong to Christ and Christ belongs to us. It’s all wrapped up in the same package.


Here’s something you might want to write down:

WOW!


Do we have all we need? I think we do. The Bible says we do. Here’s 2 Corinthians 9:8:

And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work.

We have everything we need in Jesus Christ. Therefore – and this gets back to Jesus’ teaching in the Sermon on the Mount – we have no need to worry or be afraid or be anxious or be hateful or be weak or be arrogant or be self-centered or be cowardly or be unforgiving. Because we have everything we need in Christ, we have the opposite of those things.


When you think about your life…in all its totality…the good, the bad, the trials, the triumphs, the troubles, the heartache, the celebrations…all is well, because God’s divine power has granted to you all things that pertain to life and godliness. Our generous God has dispensed to us his super-generous grace. Grace upon grace. Power to see us through. Power to 

overcome. Power to persevere.


Listen to Ephesians 1:3-6:

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons {and daughters} through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.

We have all we’ll ever need. In Jesus Christ God has blessed us with every spiritual blessing. Amen?


Here are some reasons Peter gives for why we will never lack in anything, ever.


First, we have been given God’s divine power. Dynameos, the Greek word for “power” in which we hear “dynamite,” is explosive, supernatural power. It is the power that raised Jesus from the dead. It is a sustained burst of energy. That is the power granted to us.


Here are but three examples of Jesus’ power from the Bible:

  • Matthew 24:30 – “Then will appear in heaven the sign of the Son of Man, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.”

  • Mark 5:30 – “And Jesus, perceiving in himself that power had gone out from him, immediately turned about in the crowd and said, ‘Who touched my garments?’”

  • Luke 5:17 – “On one of those days, as he was teaching, Pharisees and teachers of the law were sitting there, who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was with him to heal.”


Promises…promises…promises…and there are even more than that. We rejoice that the power that was in Jesus has been given to us.


Can we walk on water? No. Can we raise the dead? No. Can we perform miraculous healings? No. Can we turn water into wine? Not the way Jesus did. Instead, you need to ask the question, “Where is the transformational power of Jesus Christ missing from my life? Where do I need it right now?”

Perhaps it’s the power to forgive. You have been hurt, or you have hurt someone. Whatever the context, you need the power forgiveness.


Perhaps it’s the power to face your fears. There’s something holding you back. You need to break through it and get beyond it.


Perhaps it’s the power to break free of materialism. Too many people give too much meaning to money and possessions. I think that’s one of the main reasons people find the prosperity gospel so attractive. It feeds on the need to find meaning and purpose in power, position, and possessions. Do you think the preacher down in Houston would ever challenge people to sell all they have, give to the poor, and suffer for Christ? As Jesus says in Luke 12:15-21:

And he said to them, “Take care, and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” And he told them a parable, saying, “The land of a rich man produced plentifully, and he thought to himself, ‘What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?’ And he said, ‘I will do this: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.”’ But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ So is the one who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God.”


Don’t let what you have or don’t have steal your joy. Jesus gives you the power to keep your eyes on him. Heaven is more important than anything here on earth. Listen to how Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn framed it:

“Bless you prison, bless you for being in my life. For there, lying upon the rotting prison straw, I came to realize that the object of life is not prosperity as we are made to believe, but the maturity of the human soul.”


Here’s something else you might want to write down:

IN THE POWER OF CHRIST, I AM CONTENT IN ALL THINGS.


In Christ, divine power has been granted to us.

Second, in Christ, through his power, we will have all we need for this life and the next. In other words, we have everything we need to sustain our lives. Even when we struggle. Even when we experience loss. Even when 

we’re in pain. As the beautiful hymn assures us, all that we need, God’s hand has provided…Great is Thy Faithfulness! Because of his provision, in Jesus Christ, we are eternally secure.


Here’s the real beauty of God’s provision. It even applies to our spiritual lives. When we have been called by Jesus Christ…when we are walking with him…we have everything we need for spiritual growth. Right there in verse three, Peter uses a wonderful word, eusebeian. It means reverence, feeling, piety. God gives us all we need to worship Him and honor Him and praise Him. We don’t have go searching for signs or wonders or ecstatic gifts. We have already been given every spiritual resource to pursue godly living. Read the Bible. Pray. Worship. Help others. Everything we need to grow in our relationship with Jesus Christ has already been given to us. Don’t waste time looking for something you already have.


Finally, after power and provision, there’s possession. Possession of true 

knowledge of who Christ is and what he teaches us. “Through the knowledge of him who called us,” Peter says. And he uses one of my favorite Greek words. Epignoseosfrom the root word, epignosis. Any 

word with a “pig” in it has got to be good.


It means a deep and abiding knowledge. It means a true knowledge. It means precise and correct knowledge. 


We remember Matthew 7:21-23:

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers 

of lawlessness.’

What did Jesus mean? He meant there was no deep and abiding knowledge of who Jesus was and what a relationship with him required. Again, we must strive for a precise and correct knowledge of who Jesus is and how we conform our lives to that knowledge.


What Peter is saying is we have to know Christ. We have to be informed, 

instructed, and guided by his teachings. Nothing shallow.


Here’s a contemporary application of that knowledge.


If we believe and trust in Jesus Christ; if we know and accept that he died on the cross so our sin could be forgiven; if we know our name has been written down in his book of life from before the foundation of the world; if we know all these things, then it follows that we accept his teaching that marriage is between one man and one woman. We will affirm that when God created us, He created us male and female. Not swappable; not interchangeable. As the Bible says, male and female, He created them.

The deep knowledge affirmed in 2 Peter 1:3 keeps us grounded in the 

truth of God’s Word. And it protects us from the wickedness of our culture.


We’ll end here. Next week, we’ll move into verse four, where we will see how we are embraced by the precious and very great promises of Jesus Christ.


Until then, here’s a little foretaste of what that means from Charles Spurgeon:

THE LAW HE HATH FULFILLED; ITS CURSE HE HATH REMOVED; THE HANDWRITING AGAINST US, HE HATH NAILED TO HIS CROSS. ALL FOES OF OURS HE HATH MADE SHOW OF OPENLY. WHAT JOY THERE IS TO US IN THIS TRIUMPH! WHAT BLISS TO BE INTERESTED IN IT BY THE GIFT OF FAITH IN HIM!


And together, the people of God said, “AMEN.”





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