Give Diligence

2Peter 1:8-10 For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that you shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he that lacks these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and has forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if you do these things, you shall never fall 

‘If these things be in you, and abound, they make you that you shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ’ a guarantee against backsliding (1:8-10). We see from Philippians 1:9 “And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment” that our love for God will increase as we increase in knowledge of His Word (His thoughts, His will; etc.) and we will increase in all judgment which is the Greek word aisthesis meaning discernment. His knowledge allows us to discern between right and wrong (Heb. 5:14).

‘He that lacks these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and has forgotten that he was purged from his old sins’ this proves that one can have the graces and experiences of 2Peter 1:3-7 and then lose them even to the point of actually forgetting he was purged from his old sins (1:8-9). Peter exhorts everyone to be diligent, making his “calling and election sure,” declaring that they who do the things of 2Peter 1:4-7 will never fall (1:10). The doctrine of calling and election has been surrounded by many traditional theories and mysteries down through the centuries, but there is no excuse for this, as the term simply means chosen. Any person or group of persons selected or chosen of God for any particular purpose is the elect of God. Christ is called God’s elect (Isa. 42:1; 1 Pet. 2:6). A particular woman in a local congregation is called an “elect lady” (2John 1:1, 13). Israel as a nation is spoken of as the elect of God (Isa. 45:4; 65:9, 22; Matt. 24:22-31; Mark 13:20-27; Rom. 11:7, 28; 1Pet. 1:2). The body of Christ, made up of both Jews and Gentiles, is called the elect of God (Rom. 8:33; Col. 3:12; 1Thess. 1:4; Tit. 1:1). Angels are also called the elect of God (1Thess. 5:21). Anyone called to be saved and chosen for any particular mission is elected of God for that work (John 6:70; 13:18; 15:16; Acts 1:2; 9:15; 15:7). Every person saved is the elect or chosen of God to salvation (John 15:19; 2Thess. 2:13; Jam. 2:5; Rev. 17:14).

It is very clear from Scripture that final election to salvation is man’s own responsibility. The Bible is very clear that man looks on the outward appearances and God looks on the heart (1Sam. 16:7; Isa. 55:8, 9). It says that God’s ways are always righteous (Ps. 145:17). He is no respecter of persons (Rom. 2:11; Jam. 2:9). His will is for all to be saved (John 3:16; 1Tim. 2:4, 5; 2Pet. 3:9). God’s will and ways are made plain in His word and all who conform to them are loved on an equal basis according to the degree of obedience. This is how God will be able to judge all men according to his ways (Prov. 24:12; Jer. 17:10; Ezek. 18:30; 33:20; Hos. 12:2; Matt. 16:27; 1Cor. 3:11-15; 2Cor. 10:9, 10; 2Tim. 4:4; Rev. 20:11-15). God repeatedly declares that He demands wholehearted service from every man (Deut. 11:13; Josh. 22:5; 1Sam. 12:20, 24; Matt. 22:37). God constantly searches the hearts of men and deals with them in order to bring them to righteousness (Job 33:14-30; Ps. 139:23; Jer. 11:20; 17:9, 10; 20:12; Heb. 4:12). Therefore, God does not choose some to be saved and others to be lost and He is not responsible for those who will be lost.

‘Give diligence to make your calling and election sure’ the second time in six verses Christians are warned to give diligence to meeting certain terms of God lest they fall into sin and be lost (1:5, 10).

‘If you do these things, you shall never fall’ one will not fall away from grace (Heb. 6:4-6; 10:26-31) when living according to the given standard of diligence (1:5-8).

‘Fall’ [Greek: ptahyo] a form of [Greek: pipto] to trip, that is, (figuratively) to err, sin, fail (of salvation): – fall, offend, stumble, meaning to be slain, or to lose one’s favour or grace.

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