Who in Christendom do you admire? Who are your heroes of faith? Is it Peter, Paul, or James? Is it Billy Graham, your pastor, or an elder of your church? You have the same potential for great faith they do. The Gospel that saved Peter is the same truth that saved us. The Salvation that redeemed Paul is the same that redeemed us. The same God chose us, the same Savior died and resurrected for us, the same Spirit that sanctified them sanctifies us.
Verses 1-2 read,
Simeon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ,
To those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ:
2 May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.
Confirm Your Calling and Election
Jesus didn’t have to work harder to forgive our sins than theirs. He died once for all of us. He died once to forgive all sins. Hebrews 9:24-28 says it this way,
“For Christ has entered, not into holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true things, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf. 25 Nor was it to offer himself repeatedly, as the high priest enters the holy places every year with blood not his own, 26 for then he would have had to suffer repeatedly since the foundation of the world. But as it is, he has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. 27 And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment, 28 so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.”
The grace we received was the same grace. Peter is known just as much for his blunders as he is for his great faith. He famously denied knowing Jesus not once but three times on the night before the crucifixion. And Jesus forgave him. He went on to become a champion of the faith. Paul was Saul before he met Jesus. Saul persecuted the church with such fervor that he was known to and feared by all the Brethren. Yet Paul became the man who suffered for Jesus more than any of the other apostles. He exemplified Christ to the point that he could say, “Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ.” (1 Corinthians 11:1). And we all should be able to say that. We all should reach a point of maturity that we know we are emanating Jesus, and there is more Spirit than flesh radiating from us.
That level of sanctification is not reserved for some Christians. It is for all of us. We all received the Holy Spirit. He doesn’t choose to transform some and leave others the same as they were the day they were saved. He doesn’t decide to purify some less than others. He is the Spirit of the Living God. He is Almighty God and He chose to indwell us. We have the same potential to be as effective for the kingdom as any of the Christians before us or with us. Verses 3-4 read,
“His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, 4 by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.”
There is nothing and nobody who can stand in God’s way of conforming us to His image. He through His great power has given us everything we need to follow Him and live godly lives. Godliness is glorifying Jesus. God chose us, He called us. He didn’t call us so we could live ordinary lives and look like the world. He called us to His own glory! He called us to be like Him. He didn’t call us to mediocracy but to excellence. If some of us are not living extraordinary lives it is because we are not pursuing God, we are not letting Him reform us. He has to revolutionize us before we can revolutionize the world through Him.
The Holy Spirit is indwelled in us. We live by the promise of His seal. We live by the hope of Christ’s resurrection which is our resurrection. We are no longer part of the world, fallen, and headed for Hell. Because of Jesus we have overcome that. We died to sin, and live in Christ. We partake, join in God’s awesome power. It isn’t some but all of us with the potential to do great things for Jesus.
There is no reason any of us have to live mundane lives. God is awesome and He wants us to live excellent exceptional lives that venerate Christ. In John 14:12-14 Jesus said,
“Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father. 13 Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.”
You see you have the same Lord, the same faith, the same redemption that Peter, Paul, and any of the great heroes of faith have. You were called by the Father. You put your trust in Jesus. You have the Holy Spirit. Start living the God glorifying life of distinction that He made possible for you.