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YWAMYWAM Crossroads DTS The Nature and Character of God notes from lectures by Peter Brownhill

 

Three false views of God

1. Frankenstein view He is a harsh taskmaster. With this view we tend to have a response of fear.

Matthew 25:24 (NASB)  "And the one also who had received the one talent came up and said, 'Master, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow and gathering where you scattered no seed.

2. Father Christmas view  the indulgent view of God. The love of God is interpreted as leniency, letting us get away with things. In this view, discipline from God is perceived as harsh and not a part of God's love.

Hebrews 12:5-11 (NASB)
5  and you have forgotten the exhortation which is addressed to you as sons, "MY SON, DO NOT REGARD LIGHTLY THE DISCIPLINE OF THE LORD, NOR FAINT WHEN YOU ARE REPROVED BY HIM;
6  FOR THOSE WHOM THE LORD LOVES HE DISCIPLINES, AND HE SCOURGES EVERY SON WHOM HE RECEIVES." [Quotation from Proverbs 3:11]
7  It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline?
8  But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons.
9  Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live?
10  For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our good, so that we may share His holiness.
11  All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.

3. The God at a distance view. God is remote and not involved; He just set things in motion like a clock. There is no anticipation of God's involvement, intervention and activity in daily life.

Ephesians 2:13 (NASB)  But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.

How to know God

Knowing God has to be intentional on our part.

Revelation 1:12 (NASB)   Then I turned to see the voice that was speaking with me. And having turned I saw seven golden lampstands;

Knowing God has to do with setting time aside each day to seek Him.

Psalm 27:4, 8 (NASB)
4 One thing I have asked from the LORD, that I shall seek: That I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life,  To behold the beauty of the LORD And to meditate in His temple.
8
When You said,
"Seek My face," my heart said to You, "Your face, O LORD, I shall seek."

Knowing God means spending time dwelling with Him; it means gazing at Him, singing, and praising Him.

Luke 10:38-42.(NASB)
38  Now as they were traveling along, He entered a village; and a woman named Martha welcomed Him into her home.
39  She had a sister called Mary, who was seated at the Lord's feet, listening to His word.
40  But Martha was distracted with all her preparations; and she came up to Him and said, "Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to do all the serving alone? Then tell her to help me."
41
 But the Lord answered and said to her, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about so many things;
42  but only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her."

Meeting God in the morning is emphasized in Scripture.

Psalms 55:17 (NASB) Evening and morning and at noon, I will complain and murmur, And He will hear my voice.

Psalm  59:16 (NASB) But as for me, I shall sing of Your strength; Yes, I shall joyfully sing of Your lovingkindness in the morning, For You have been my stronghold And a refuge in the day of my distress.

Psalm 88:13 (NASB) But I, O LORD, have cried out to You for help, And in the morning my prayer comes before You.

Psalm  90:14-15 (NASB)
14  O satisfy us in the morning with Your lovingkindness, That we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.
15  Make us glad according to the days You have afflicted us, And the years we have seen evil.

Psalm  108:1-2 (NASB)
1 My heart is steadfast, O God; I will sing, I will sing praises, even with my soul.
2
 Awake, harp and lyre; I will awaken the dawn!

Psalm  143:8 (NASB)  Let me hear Your lovingkindness in the morning; For I trust in You; Teach me the way in which I should walk; For to You I lift up my soul.

Song of Solomon 7:12 (NASB) "Let us rise early and go to the vineyards; Let us see whether the vine has budded, And its blossoms have opened, And whether the pomegranates have bloomed. There I will give you my love.

The day is His not mine and we need to be happy in it.  

1 Thessalonians 5:18 (NASB) In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

Psalm 37:4 (NASB) Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.

He has our best interest at heart.  He is always with us.  He never fails us.  Delight yourself in the Lord.  He will lead you.  He will guide you.  He will direct you

Proverbs 3:6 (NASB) In all your ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct your paths.

If you are looking for direction in your life acknowledge Him.  He gives good counsel.  God is our delight.  He loves us.  He protects us.  If you are going through a rough place call on Him, don't aimlessly seek direction, call on Him.  Don't dwell on hurts, dwell on the all-encompassing power of God. Choose to be happy, make it a definite choice. Dwell on His provision.  Dwell on His help. Dwell on His promises. Delight yourself in Him.

What are some of the results of knowing God?

Grace and peace come into our lives through the knowledge of Him.

2 Peter 1:2-3 (NASB)

2  Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord;

3  seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.

Psalm 36:10 (NASB) O continue Your lovingkindness to those who know You, And Your righteousness to the upright in heart.

Loving God and loving others are evidence of knowing Him;

I John 4:7-8.(NASB)

7 Beloved let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.
8  The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

We stop habitual sin.

1 John 3:6 (NASB)  No one who abides in Him sins; no one who sins has seen Him or knows Him. 

We come to a place of delighting in obeying God.

1 John 2:3-4 (NASB)
3  By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments.
4  The one who says, "I have come to know Him," and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him;

We learn to trust Him.

Psalm 9:10 (NASB) And those who know Your name will put their trust in You, For You, O LORD, have not forsaken those who seek You.

One of the ways to know God intimately is to trust Him absolutely.

Proverbs 9:10 (NASB) Knowledge of the Holy One brings understanding

A love and an intimacy with God brings a love for His Word.

Psalm 119:24, 47-48 (NASB)  
24
Your testimonies also are my delight; They are my counselors.
47  I shall delight in Your commandments, Which I love.
48  And I shall lift up my hands to Your commandments, Which I love; And I will meditate on Your statutes.

Purity comes from seeking Him through His Word.

Psalm 119:9-11 (NASB)

9 How can a young man keep his way pure? By keeping it according to Your word.

10  With all my heart I have sought You; Do not let me wander from Your commandments.

11  Your word I have treasured in my heart, That I may not sin against You.

Philippians 4:8 (NASB) Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything, worthy of praise, dwell on these things

Knowing God through His Word brings understanding,

Psalm 119:34, 104, 169 (NASB)

 34 Give me understanding, that I may observe Your law And keep it with all my heart.

104  From Your precepts I get understanding; Therefore, I hate every false way.

109 Let my cry come before You, O LORD; Give me understanding according to Your word.  

Proverbs 4:7 (NASB) In all your getting, get understanding.

The motivation to know God comes from understanding God has infinitely greater value over anything else in our lives.

Philippians 3:7 (NASB) But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. 

Nothing should compare with knowing God.

Jeremiah 10:7 (NASB)  Who would not fear You, O King of the nations?  Indeed, it is Your due! For among all the wise men of the nations And in all their kingdoms, There is none like You.

There were three aspects to the knowledge of God that Paul pursued

Philippians 3:10  (NASB)  that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death;

·         The power of His resurrection

·         The fellowship of His sufferings

·         Becoming like Him in His death

Knowing Him gives great fire power for evangelism

The natural attributes of God, the essence of who He is

The natural attributes of God are those permanent qualities which belong to His nature; those qualities without which He would not be God.

God is spirit

John 4:24 (NASB)  "God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth."

1 Peter 1:8 (NASB)  and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,


God is everlasting or eternal - endless in time

Psalm 90:2 (NASB) Before the mountains were born Or You gave birth to the earth and the world, Even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God.


God is infinite without measure.


God is omnipresent everywhere

Psalm 139:7-10 (NASB)

7 Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence?

8  If I ascend to heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in Sheol, behold, You are there.

9  If I take the wings of the dawn, If I dwell in the remotest part of the sea,

10  Even there Your hand will lead me, And Your right hand will lay hold of me.

Jeremiah. 23:24 (NASB) "Can a man hide himself in hiding places., so I do not see him?" declares the LORD. "Do I not fill the heavens and the earth?" declares the LORD.

God is omniscient He knows everything

Hebrews 4:13 (NASB)  And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.

Romans 11:33 (NASB)  Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways!

God is omnipotent all powerful

Jeremiah 32:17-18 (NASB)
17  'Ah Lord GOD! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and by Your outstretched arm!  Nothing is too difficult for You,
18  who shows lovingkindness to thousands but repays the iniquity of fathers into the bosom of their children after them, O great and mighty God.  The LORD of hosts is His name;

God is personal

John 10:3 (NASB) My sheep hear My voice

He cares, He can speak, He can be in relationship, He can be involved, even in the details.

Matthew 3:15-17 (NASB)
15  But Jesus answering said to him, "Permit it at this time; for in this way it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness." Then he *permitted Him.
16  After being baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove and lighting on Him,
17  and behold, a voice out of the heavens said, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased."

We see in the Trinity the unity and diversity of God. The nature of God's oneness.

Genesis. 1:1 (NASB)  In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

Genesis 1:26 (NASB) Let Us make man in Our image

God is love.

1 John 4:16 (NASB)  We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.

1 John 4:7-12, 16-17(NASB)
7  Beloved let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.
8  The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love.
9  By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him.
10  In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
11  Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
12  No one has seen God at any time; if we love one another, God abides in us, and His love is perfected in us.
16  We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.
17  By this, love is perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment; because as He is, so also are we in this world. 

God has a mind.  He can reason.

Isaiah 1:18 (NASB) "Come now, and let us reason together," Says the LORD, "Though your sins are as scarlet, They will be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They will be like wool.

He has a memory

Psalm 111:5 (NASB)  He has given food to those who fear Him; He will remember His covenant forever.

He has consciousness

Isaiah. 43:10-11 (NASB)
10  "You are My witnesses," declares the LORD, "And My servant whom I have chosen, So that you may know and believe Me And understand that I am He. Before Me there was no God formed, And there will be none after Me.
11  "I, even I, am the LORD, And there is no savior besides Me.

He has imagination, He is creative

Genesis 1 (NASB) 
1  In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
2  The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters.
3  Then God said, "Let there be light"; and there was light.
4  God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness.
5  God called the light day, and the darkness He called night. And there was evening and there was morning, one day.
6  Then God said, "Let there be an expanse in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters."
7  God made the expanse and separated the waters which were below the expanse from the waters which were above the expanse; and it was so.
8  God called the expanse heaven. And there was evening and there was morning, a second day.
9
 Then God said, "Let the waters below the heavens be gathered into one place, and let the dry land appear"; and it was so.
10
 God called the dry land earth, and the gathering of the waters He called seas; and God saw that it was good.
11  Then God said, "Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees on the earth bearing fruit after their kind with seed in them"; and it was so.
12  The earth brought forth vegetation, plants yielding seed after their kind, and trees bearing fruit with seed in them, after their kind; and God saw that it was good.
13  There was evening and there was morning, a third day.
14  Then God said, "Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years;
15  and let them be for lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth"; and it was so.
16  God made the two great lights, the greater light to govern the day, and the lesser light to govern the night; He made the stars also.
17  God placed them in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth,
18  and to govern the day and the night, and to separate the light from the darkness; and God saw that it was good.
19  There was evening and there was morning, a fourth day.
20  Then God said, "Let the waters teem with swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth in the open expanse of the heavens."
21  God created the great sea monsters and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarmed after their kind, and every winged bird after its kind; and God saw that it was good.
22  God blessed them, saying, "Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth."
23  There was evening and there was morning, a fifth day.
24  Then God said, "Let the earth bring forth living creatures after their kind: cattle and creeping things and beasts of the earth after their kind"; and it was so.
25  God made the beasts of the earth after their kind, and the cattle after their kind, and everything that creeps on the ground after its kind; and God saw that it was good.
26  Then God said, "Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth."
27
 God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
28  God blessed them; and God said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over every living thing that moves on the earth."
29  Then God said, "Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the surface of all the earth, and every tree which has fruit yielding seed; it shall be food for you;
30  and to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the sky and to every thing that moves on the earth which has life, I have given every green plant for food"; and it was so.
31  God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.

God  has intellect

Psalm 139:17-18 (NASB)
17  How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How vast is the sum of them!
18 If I should count them, they would outnumber the sand. When I awake, I am still with You.

He has emotions

Genesis 6:6 (NASB)  The LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart.

Ephesians 4:30 (NASB)  Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.

Mark 3:5 (NASB)  After looking around at them with anger, grieved at their hardness of heart, He *said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." And he stretched it out, and his hand was restored.

He has a will

Genesis 6:7 (NASB) The LORD said, "I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, from man to animals to creeping things and to birds of the sky; for I am sorry that I have made them."


He lives in time [and eternity.]

John 1:14 (NASB) And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth

Genesis 18:1-10, 14, 21-23 (NASB)
1  Now the LORD appeared to him by the oaks of Mamre, while he was sitting at the tent door in the heat of the day.
2  When he lifted up his eyes and looked, behold, three men were standing opposite him; and when he saw them, he ran from the tent door to meet them and bowed himself to the earth,
3  and said, "My Lord, if now I have found favor in Your sight, please do not pass Your servant by.
4  "Please let a little water be brought and wash your feet, and rest yourselves under the tree;
5  and I will bring a piece of bread, that you may refresh yourselves; after that you may go on, since you have visited your servant." And they said, "So do, as you have said."
6  So Abraham hurried into the tent to Sarah, and said, "Quickly, prepare three measures of fine flour, knead it and make bread cakes."
7
 Abraham also ran to the herd, and took a tender and choice calf and gave it to the servant, and he hurried to prepare it.
8  He took curds and milk and the calf which he had prepared and placed it before them; and he was standing by them under the tree as they ate.
9  Then they said to him, "Where is Sarah your wife?" And he said, "There, in the tent."
10  He said, "I will surely return to you at this time next year; and behold, Sarah your wife will have a son." And Sarah was listening at the tent door, which was behind him.
14 "Is anything too difficult for the LORD? At the appointed time I will return to you, at this time next year, and Sarah will have a son."
21  "I will go down now and see if they have done entirely according to its outcry, which has come to Me; and if not, I will know."
22  Then the men turned away from there and went toward Sodom, while Abraham was still standing before the LORD.
23  Abraham came near and said, "Will You indeed sweep away the righteous with the wicked?

Summary of the nature of God

God is an invisible, personal, everlasting infinite trinity of loving beings.

Truth confirmed

I appreciated the lectures by Peter Brownhill and his use of Scripture.  It was good basic theology like I had in Bible College and seminary.  He could add a few attributes and further explanation.  I appreciated His call for application and for prayer, not just more head knowledge.

God is Immanent - though He is Transcendent, (He exists outside of space and time.) He is present, He can be known and even lives within those of us who believe.  God’s immanence refers to His presence within His creation. (It is not to be confused with imminence, which refers to the timing of Jesus’ return to earth.) God is present in all of creation, while remaining distinct from it.  In other words, there is no place where God is not.

Colossians 1:17 (NASB)  He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.

Acts 17:25, 28 (NASB)  
25 nor is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since He Himself gives to all people life and breath and all things;
28 for in Him we live and move and exist, as even some of your own poets have said, 'For we also are His children.'

Jesus is Immanuel, God with us.  The Incarnation shows that God is present and involved.

Hebrews 1:3 (NASB)  And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,

God is sovereign.  He is the Ruler, in charge of all His creation

Psalm 29:10 (NASB) The span style="FONT-VARIANT: small-caps">LORD sat as King at the flood; Yes, the LORD sits as King forever.

1 Chronicles 29:11-12 (NASB)

11  "Yours, O LORD, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, indeed everything that is in the heavens and the earth; Yours is the dominion, O LORD, and You exalt Yourself as head over all.
12  "Both riches and honor come from You, and You rule over all, and in Your hand is power and might; and it lies in Your hand to make great and to strengthen everyone. 

The Logos who is Jesus

John 1:1, 14 (NASB)
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
14 And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Perhaps one of the most basic statements of how God has revealed Himself to man is found in Hebrews

Hebrews 1:1-2:(NASB) In many and various ways God spoke of old to our fathers by the prophets; but in these last days He has spoken to us by a Son.

God has also revealed Himself in creation.  I differ with Peter in his use of the word rhema, like logos it is a Greek word meaning spoken word.  In the past century a teaching has risen up in charismatic circles.  The teaching states that rhema means what God is saying to you personally, this may supersede the scriptures; while logos is the written word and not a direct revelation from God to you directly.  We can see both words used interchangeably in Scripture, which indicates that this teaching should be questioned.  God is not limited to only speak to us or lead us through the written Word of Scripture but there is not a Scriptural basis for calling this leading rhema.

What God is saying to me

I differ with Peter in his definition of holy.  The basic definition for holy or holiness is to be set apart, set apart from evil, set apart for the use or purposes of God, and to be pure and undefiled.

God is gracious full of grace and giving gifts.  God is wise. He knows what is best.

 I really appreciated his quote of George Mueller. An area I want to work on in my life is being happy in God's service. In the past five months I have found myself snapping at people, and arguing with them, not being as pleasant as I should be. George Mueller said:

 I saw more clearly than ever, that the first great and primary business to which I ought to attend every day was, to have my soul happy in the Lord.  The first thing to be concerned about was not, how much I might serve the Lord, how I might glorify the Lord; but how I might get my soul into a happy state, and how my inner man might be nourished.  For I might seek to set the truth before the unconverted, I might seek to benefit believers, I might seek to relieve the distressed, I might in other ways seek to behave myself as it becomes a child of God in this world; and yet, not being happy in the Lord and not being nourished and strengthened in my inner man day by day, all this might not be attended to in a right spirit.

When I have taught on being merciful, I often refer to the story of Mephibosheth the son of Jonathan, who was shown mercy by King David for the sake of the promise David made to Jonathan.

Ephesians 4:32 Be kind one to another, tender hearted forgiving one another, even as God, for Christ sake, has forgiven you.

Not only is God righteous in all His decisions but He is absolutely perfect.

God is just, He is a fair and impartial judge, He has set up laws and He punishes sin. In justice, there is a recognized code of conduct. There are the laws of God.

Matthew 5:17 (NASB) Jesus said, "Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill.

Once laws are established, people are expected to follow them. If they fail to, measures are taken to punish the offenders.  We as humans are unable to totally keep and satisfy the laws of God.

Romans 6:23 (NASB) The wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

Hebrews 10:30 (NASB) For we know Him who said, "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay," says the Lord. And again, "The LORD will judge His people."

Thanks be to God for His wonderful gift of salvation,  which satisfies God's perfect justice.

2 Corinthians 9:15 (NASB)  Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!

Sinners must be punished

Hebrews. 9:22 (NASB) and without the shedding of blood there is no remission

God became a man and took the punishment for us.

Knowing God

The Apostle Peter gives us eight steps in knowing God in 2 Peter.

2 Peter 1:1-11 (NASB)

1  Simon Peter, a bond-servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who have received a faith of the same kind as ours, by the righteousness of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ:
2  Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord;

 3  seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.
4  For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, so that by them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust.

5  Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge,

 6  and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness,
7  and in your godliness, brotherly kindness, and in your brotherly kindness, love.

8  For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they render you neither useless nor unfruitful in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

9  For he who lacks these qualities is blind or short-sighted, having forgotten his purification from his former sins.
10  Therefore, brethren, be all the more diligent to make certain about His calling and choosing you; for as long as you practice these things, you will never stumble;
11  for in this way the entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will be abundantly supplied to you.

The list given to us begins with faith and ends with love.  The life changing process of sanctification began when we first trusted Jesus Christ as Lord.  For many of us, we had little knowledge of God or the Bible when we made our initial decision to become Christians.  We placed our trust in Jesus, because He drew us.

The list Peter gives us is not something we work through once and then stop. It's a pattern for day by day living for the rest of our lives.  Peter is not telling us how to be saved by good works, but rather about our giving God the opportunity to mold us into the likeness of His Son.

Step Two is virtue which means that our new-found relationship with Christ will lead us to make life-style changes. We desire to live a pure life in pursuit of God.  Repentance means to change your mind-to see things differently and to change your behavior accordingly. Knowing Jesus causes our priorities to change. We abandon old habits and put new activities in their place.

Step Three is further knowledge. As we apply the truth we have received, it becomes part of who we are, and we then have the capacity to acquire new and deeper truth. On the other hand, truth not acted on is lost. The Christian must never stop leaning and growing.

Step Four, self-control is also a part of the fruit of the Spirit

Galatians 5:22-26 (NASB)

22  But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,

23  gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
24  Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

 25  If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit.
26  Let us not become boastful, challenging one another, envying one another.

Step Five, as we mature in Christ we become reliable, dependable, consistent, and patient.  We keep our promises.

Step six is godliness 

Step seven, is to show brotherly concern and affection towards our fellow believers.

 Lastly step eight is the self-giving love which comes from God. [1]

Areas God has brought to my attention 

God is working on me to not be proud of past learning and experience.  He is teaching me to better work with teams.  He is teaching me to be more expressive and emotional in worship, stretching me out of my comfort zone.  God is showing me that I need to be happy and not so critical of others. 

I am reminded again that I must devote more time to intimacy with God in having more alone time with Him studying the Scriptures and praying.  I don't know that I blame Satan for it, but I tend fill up too much time doing good things rather than the best things.  Being very busy with many activities, I don't at all like to be idle and see so many things that need to be done, but sometimes this may be keeping me from the time I need with God.

This is an excerpt from chapter 6 of my book YWAM Discipleship copyright 2018 all rights reserved

Scripture quotations taken from the New American Standard Bible® (NASB),
Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation Used by permission. www.Lockman.org



[1]/span> Lambert Dolphin. THE EIGHT-FOLD WAY TO KNOWING GOD A Study from the Second Epistle of Peter, Chapter One

http://www.ldolphin.org/Eightfld.html (accessed January 12, 2007.)

 
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