Thoughts on GodlinessBy John M. Burgstiner
Founder/President of Logos Nutritionals, LLC
The apostle Peter was a man who was well qualified to talk about Godliness. He was the recognized leader and spokesperson of the twelve disciples, trained by Jesus Himself and a personal witness to His ministry, death, resurrection and transfiguration. Getting to know Jesus personally transformed Peter from an arrogant, impulsive, selfish person to a humble, imperfect but powerful servant whom God used mightily in the leadership of His church, even as a mouthpiece of what would eventually become scripture.
In 2 Peter1:3 he said this: For His divine power has given us everything for life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness.
This is truth that too many Christians miss out on. Eternal life is not only something to be looked forward to in the future, but it is something to be celebrated now. The word godliness means reverence for God and indicates a lifestyle that invites God into every realm of life no reserved areas allowed! We are to live our lives according to God s will, always mindful of how He would want us to act in every situation.
In 2 Peter 1:5-7 he said make every effort to supplement your faith with goodness, goodness with knowledge, knowledge with self control, self control with endurance, endurance with godliness, godliness with brotherly affection , and brotherly affection with love.
This is known as faith s ladder of virtues , and it reveals the seven fruits that are seen in men who are intentional about walking with Him. Part of the mystery of faith is that we grow more like Him by the same grace that saves us in other words, we don t earn our sanctification any more than we do our salvation. However, action is required on our part. First we must accept Him and then we must diligently seek (spend time with) Him.
The ladder of virtues is one of those things that are worth committing to memory:
- Add to your faith goodness, or moral excellence with a related meaning of courage. A finely trained soldier embodies the meaning of this term.
- Add to your faith knowledge, meaning a personal relationship with Him and a deep intimacy with His word.
- Add to your faith self control, or temperance . This means that passions do not control you, but the Holy Spirit does.
- Add to your faith endurance or patience . This refers to strength of character and an active hope that never gives up or gives in regardless of the circumstances.
- These virtues added to your faith produces godliness, or strong moral character that is not easily shaken.
The last two virtues are fruits of godliness, brotherly affection and love. Jesus taught that love for one another was to be the identifying mark of His disciples. The love Peter was describing was agape love, the highest expression of the Christian life love that is sacrificial and unconcerned about what it receives in return.
Beloved, you have a bright future ahead of you. Be intentional about your walk with God, and He will meet your every need as He molds you to be more like Him with each passing day. Above all, protect your heart. From it will come the choices through which your destiny will be determined.