The Means of Grace – Part 2
“Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.” (2 Peter 1:4 NIV)
Once we have accepted Jesus as our Savior and our Lord, we read in God’s Word that he has wonderful promises for every believer—among them, the promises of the shalom, or peace, of God and the joy of the Lord that is our strength; and the promise that the steps of the righteous are ordered of the Lord. But not all Christians live with the evidence of the fulfillment of these promises in their lives. A lot of Christians know that they have been forgiven, that they are born again and their lives have been transformed, but they’re not living with one-tenth of what God has for them. Their faith isn’t vibrant and strong. They think that they just have to receive Jesus as their Savior, go to church whenever they can on a Sunday, and that everything will work out. But they’re wrong, because life isn’t lived from Sunday to Sunday; it’s lived day by day. Church isn’t a gas station where we go to fill up so that we’re good until the following week; it just doesn’t work that way.
The Lord promises supernatural peace to his children, not as the world gives, no matter what is happening around us. Movie stars, athletes, millionaires, and billionaires don’t have this peace automatically. They may have some financial security, which can be gone in a second; but peace? Only Jesus gives that, because he’s the Prince of Peace. Jesus also promises us joy instead of agitation and anxiety and depression; joy that is dependent not on our outward circumstances, but on the life-giving Spirit of the living God that dwells inside every Christian. Then there’s the guidance that is provided by God to all his children. Think about it: As Christians, when we make a decision, it doesn’t have to be by our limited intelligence, which doesn’t know what’s around the bend. Life has a lot of surprises, but the Lord knows the beginning from the end. Don’t you want the guidance of God instead of making decisions on your own? Don’t you want the blessing of God on you?
To be continued...
Read 2 Peter 1:3-11.