{Reading The Book of 2 Peter~ Week 13}

A reminder to Walk in Obedience to God

In this Bible Study in 2 Peter, Pete is diligent to remind the believer to make sure of his calling and choosing you. Join us as we read through the book of 2 Peter.The gospels find Peter sitting in a boat with his brother Andrew catching fish when one day Jesus comes by and says to Peter, “Follow Me.” Peter left everything he had and followed Christ. The world that Peter had known suddenly changed. The man known for putting his foot in his mouth and denying Christ three times would become one of 12 Apostles that Christ would use to build His church.

I can see myself in Peter! Eager, quick to speak and slow to listen. Running ahead of myself, wanting to serve so badly, looking at everything around me and  forgetting to keep my eyes Jesus.  Can you relate to Peter at all?  If we are honest I think each of us can see a little of ourselves in him.

 What growth we see in the Apostle Peter from “he of little faith” to the rock upon which Christ would build His church! Christ prepared Peter for the work and service of building His church through many tribulations. Now Peter would prepare and encourage others in their work and service as the church.

In 2 Peter 1:14 we find Peter faced with the fact that he is about to die. Jesus tells Peter in John 21:18-19 that when he grew old, he would stretch out his hands and someone else would gird him and take him where he did not want to go.The church historian Tertullian, Origen, and Eusebius state that Peter’s was stretched out by his hands, he was dressed in prison garb, he was taken where no one wanted to go (a crucifixion), and was crucified.  He was said to be crucified upside down because he felt unworthy to be crucified in the way that the Lord Jesus Christ had been.

We come to the second letter that Peter had penned to the brethren, aliens and strangers in this world, with a message to encourage and strengthen. Peter was determined and diligent to remind the brethren to whom they belonged. He would remind them/us that we have been bought with a price and to be obedient to our high calling as followers of Jesus Christ.

For This Very Reason

In 2 Peter 1:1-11 Peter reminds us that we are bond slavesand followers of Christ Jesus. He reminds us that God’s divine power has granted to us everything we need for life and godliness. Because of what God in Christ has done in and for us he urges us on to obedience. In 2 Peter 1:5-7 Peter gives us a list of qualities that should be ours and tells us that they should be increasing! I am reminded of Jesus’ words in Matthew 3:8″ Bear fruit in keeping with repentance.” Now applying all diligence to our faith:

  • Supply moral excellence
  • In your moral excellence, knowledge
  • In your knowledge, self-control
  • In your self-control, perseverance
  • In your perseverance, godliness
  • In your godliness, brotherly kindness
  • In your brotherly kindness, love

The Christian life should always be fruit bearing. Peters words are strong, work out your salvation, be diligent in your walk with the Lord. There is action involved on our part. God has granted to us everything we need to grow, now walk in obedience to His call. Peter is not teaching us to walk on our own far from it. He is reminding us that we have been supplied with all that we need to walk. We have been given the indwelling Holy Spirit that guides and directs us. He has given us His written word to live by. By the way, the indwelling Holy Spirit will only guide and teach through the written word of God. That is why it is so vitally important to be diligent students of His word.This leads us to Peters next reminder.

False Prophets Are Alive and Well

Peter says in the first few verses of chapter 2 that false prophets arose among the people and would arise among us. His words have not failed to be true. There are false prophets all around us. Do you see them? Do you know that what they are saying and teaching is false? How do we know if what they are teaching is false? What are their motives?

Peter describes these men and women as false teachers who secretly introduce destructive heresies. In their greed, they will exploit you with false words. In their falsehood, they are denying the one who bought them and are bringing destruction upon themselves and on those who follow their teachings. I do not know about you but this passage scars me to death. I do not want to be deceived and taken down the wrong path! How about you? Let’s be diligent in keeping our eyes on Christ, staying in the word of God and praying for strength for ourselves and our brothers and sisters in Christ.

Their Destruction is Not Asleep

Warning! If God did not spare angels when they sinned but cast them into hell, nor spare the ancient world when He brought a flood and condemned Sodom and Gomorrah, do you not think He knows how to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the day of judgment? There is a day coming when all men will be judged. God is not slow about His promises. The day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens and the earth will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up.

“Since all these things are to be destroyed in this way, what sort of people ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness?” 2 Peter 3:11

The Lord is patient not wanting anyone to perish. The Lord knows how to rescue the godly from temptation. The elect, the true believer in God through Christ Jesus will be protected. God will persevere him until the end. Peters words serve as a warning! Are you sure of your salvation? Are you being diligent to seek the word of God and not the words of man to see if you are indeed in the Lord?  Our walk with the Lord is serious business. This is not a game or something to be taken lightly. It is real and there are very real consequences for those who do not listen and obey the word of God!

Hasten The Day of The Lord

We are to be looking for and hastening the day of the Lord. We are to be about our Fathers business preaching the gospel to ourselves and sharing the word of truth with those who we are around.

Be diligent to be found in Him in peace, spotless and blameless. 2 Peter 3:14

Because of our security in Christ Jesus may we through the power of Christ, “grow in the grace and knowledge of our lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be glory, both now and to the day of eternity.” 2 Peter 3:18

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This message from Peter  is so timely. It is so vitally important for the believer to be in the word of God renewing their minds and learning what the will of God is. That is what we are doing here at Conforming To The Truth. We are reading through 17 New Testament books. We are entering our fourteenth week of reading and would love for you to join in with us. I always say it is never too late to start reading Truth. July 11th we will begin  reading the book of  1 John. Click on the image below to get all of the details! I am ready to send you the reading plan and add you to our Facebook group:) I also have a free Bible Study in the book of Titus. Click on the image below and it will take you to all of the details!

17 Week New Testament Reading Plan  Would like to learn to adorn the doctrine of God? Please join Conforming To The Truth as we do a Bible Study in the book of Titus and learn from the word how to glorify God and adorn His word.

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{Reading The Book of James~ Week 11}

Be Doers of the Word: Look Intently At The Law of Liberty

The book of James is filled with teachings on how to love our neighbor as ourselves and to love the Lord our God with all our hearts. Join me at conforming to the truth as we read and talk about this great book. James is writing to the Jewish Christians scattered among the nations. Ok, do not stop reading  the book of James because you do not think this is written to you the Gentile! Paul teaches in Romans 2: 25-29 that a Jew is one whose heart has been circumcised by the Spirit of God. He is a Jew who is one inwardly not one outwardly. Spiritually speaking all believers have been grafted into the nation of Israel. Romans 11:17-23. So this book is written for all Christians at all times!

James’s message is to show us what the gospel of Jesus Christ should look like as it is lived out in our everyday lives. There are a few things about the gospel that I believe will be helpful to keep in mind as we walk it out.

  1. The gospel does not show favoritism
  2. The gospel  tells the Truth the whole Truth and nothing but the Truth
  3. The gospel is not manipulative, it is straight forward and bold

Let’s look at this book and see how we are to walk out our Christian life according to the gospel.

Receive the word implanted

Man cannot blame God for any of his evil actions. James teaches that  we are tempted and carried away by our own lusts. God cannot be tempted by evil and he Himself does not tempt anyone. Do not be deceived, everything good and perfect comes from God. There is no variation or shifting shadow. Everything and every situation in our lives are always moving always changing. But not God! He is always good and never changes! He is constant in His being. He is our constant. We can always count on Him!

In His goodness and in the exercise of His will we were brought forth, regenerated, saved through the word of Truth, the gospel. Paul teaches in Philippians 1:6, “That He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.” The same truth that saved us brought us forth, is also the same truth that sanctifies us. God is doing a good work in us. Remember all that He does is good and for our good. We are to receive the word of truth, the good word of God that is implanted in us with joy. When we are reading or studying the word of God our attitude should be one of listening with humility. James says to be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to anger. Whatever God’s word instructs us to do or teaches us about the character of God we are to receive it. The word that is implanted in us saves our souls.

Why do we so often complain and murmur against something that is doing a good work in us?

Prove Yourself Doers of the Word:faith without works is dead

There is more to just hearing the word of God. We are instructed to be doers of the word. Walk it out in its various instructions.  What good is it if I sit and read or study  the word get up and go about my business and never think about or put into practice what God’s word instructs? God says in James 1:26 that man’s religion is worthless. But the man who looks intently at the perfect Law, the Law of liberty, and abides by it will be blessed in what he does.

What use is it, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but he has no works? Can that faith save him? Faith that has no works is dead. Man is justified by works and not by faith alone. Works do not save us. James is not contradicting what Paul has already taught in other books of the Bible. Paul teaches that we are saved y faith alone. James is teaching is that True God-given faith is not alone. It comes with good works for us to do. Works that were prepared from before the foundation of the world for us to walk in. {Ephesians 2:10}

Fulfill the royal Law

When we live out the true gospel we are fulfilling the Royal Law. What is the Royal law you may be asking? Jesus quotes the law in Matthew 22:37, ” Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and foremost commandment. The second is like it. You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” James quotes the second part of this commandment in chapter 2 verse 9 calling it the Royal commandment.

I believe we can sum up the book of James with the Royal law. If we are loving God with all of  our hearts, our souls, and our minds then we will walk out the gospel truth by loving our neighbor as ourselves. You and I know very well that we do not live this out perfectly. I do not always love God with all my heart, my soul, and my mind, therefore I am not loving my neighbor as myself. Believer, do not lose heart! God has given us the Holy Spirit of promise that guides, teaches and trains us. He has given us His written word to teach, encourage and train us.

The book of James is filled with reminders of how we are to love others and therefore showing our love for God. Believers do not fight against the word of God but receive it, walk it out as we wait for the glorious return of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Be a light in a dark dark place.

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This message from James  is so timely. It is so vitally important for the believer to be in the word of God renewing their minds and learning what the will of God is. That is what we are doing here at Conforming To The Truth. We are reading through 17 New Testament books. We are entering our twelfth week of reading and would love for you to join in with us. I always say it is never too late to start reading Truth. June 27th  we will begin  reading the book of  1 Peter. Click on the image below to get all of the details! I am ready to send you the reading plan and add you to our Facebook group:) I also have a free Bible Study in the book of Titus. Click on the image below and it will take you to all of the details!

17 Week New Testament Reading Plan  Would like to learn to adorn the doctrine of God? Please join Conforming To The Truth as we do a Bible Study in the book of Titus and learn from the word how to glorify God and adorn His word.

{Reading the book of Philemon~Week 10}

 

From Slave of Sin to Freedom in Christ Jesus

Have you read the book of Philemon lately? It is a small book with large Truth. Please join Lisa @conformingtothetruth as we read through this book learning about grace and forgiveness. Philemon is one book that I have never heard anyone preach, teach, or even mention!

I have to admit I have read this book many times but this time, God has opened my eyes to a greater understanding of what this small one chapter book holds!  This little book is a picture of God’s grace, mercy , and forgiveness which  He bestows on the captives and sets them free.

It is also a reminder to us to show mercy, grace, and forgiveness. For we once were in need of God’s grace and mercy!

why the Letter was written

Paul wrote this letter to Philemon concerning his runaway slave Onesimus. According to this letter, Onesimus ran away from Philemon to Rome where he encountered the apostle Paul. While in Rome Onesimus became a Christian a beloved brother. Philemon 1:10:

I appeal to you for my child Onesimus, whom I have begotten in my imprisonment.

But if he has wronged you in any way or owes you anything, charge that to my account;

We learn in verse 18 that Onesimus had run away from Philemon, he had wronged him and may have taken something from him. According to Roman Law Philemon had the right to put him to death. Paul is appealing to Philemon to show mercy and forgiveness to Onesimus. Continue reading

{Reading The Book of Titus~Week 9}

The Church is Entrusted with the Truth of the Gospel: The church is Called to Holy Living

God has entrusted the gospel with the church. Our high calling is holy living. Join Conforming To The Truth as we read through the book of Titus. we would love for you to join us in reading Truth!God called Paul as an apostle, He sent him as a messenger of Jesus Christ and entrusted him with that gospel. The word “entrusted” sticks out to me in this first chapter. I remember in 2 Timothy that Paul told Timothy to entrust the gospel to faithful men.

“The things which you heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, entrust these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.” 2 Timothy 2:2

In this letter to Titus, I believe Paul to be doing the same thing. He has left Titus on the Isle of Crete and entrusted him to set in order what remained or correct the wrong doctrine and practices of the churches. According to chapter 1:10-13 Paul already knew about these men who needed to be corrected and he describes them as: Continue reading

{Reading the Book of 2 Timothy}

Guarding The Treasure: The Good News of Salvation

Guard, through the Holy Spirit who dwells in us, the treasure which has been entrusted to you. 2 Timothy 1:14

Difficult days are upon us. Men are progressing for bad to worse. Will you join us in a Bible Study in 2 Timothy to learn what the scriptures teach us to look for and how we can stand in these difficult times? The days of Paul’s ministry are coming to an end. He finds himself in a cold cell {4:13} in chains {2:9}with no hope of deliverance {4:6}. According to 2 Timothy 1:15 all who were in Asia turned away from Paul except Onesiphorus who refreshed him and was not ashamed of his chains.

Paul is penning the last letter he will be guided to write. He addresses it to Timothy his true child in the faith. He encourages Timothy but at the same time urges him to stand firm in the faith, and to join him in suffering for the gospel. He exhorts him not to be ashamed of the gospel  nor to be ashamed of him because he is in chains.  I can hear him speaking to Timothy as a father or mother speaks to his or her own child as he says these words,  “Timothy I am in prison but the gospel of Jesus Christ is not imprisoned it is not chained. I am enduring all things for the sake of the elect, those chosen by God before the foundation of the world so that they may obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus. Timothy, the gospel must be preached for the sake of the elect. Do not be timid, kindle afresh the spiritual gift that has been given to you and go forth with the true gospel of Jesus Christ.” Continue reading