Preacher: Rev. Ryan T. Krauss
Scripture: 2 Peter 1:1-7, Deuteronomy 30:11-20
Description: For the second sermon of our ‘In Progress’ series, we discuss the next quality found in 2 Peter 1:5-7. “Make every effort to add to your faith goodness…” Other translations call this word ‘good works’ or ‘virtue.’ As God produces faith in us, and as we exercise our faith (trust) in God, the natural outcome is a behavior change. I remember the first few months after I made the conscious choice to follow Jesus Christ I wanted so desperately for all my thoughts and actions to make him happy, to follow his commands. This is not to say that I’ve changed my mind (far from it!), but after coming to trust that God had forgiven and redeemed my heart, I just naturally wanted to do good things out of gratitude to God’s grace. This, I think, is part of what it means for ‘goodness’ to come after ‘faith’ in 2 Peter 1:1-7.
A word of caution, though. Ephesians 2:10 reminds us that God created us to do ‘good works’ in Christ Jesus, yet this should not be misconstrued as forgiveness depending on good works. Ephesians 2:8-9 pointed remind us that ‘grace through faith’ bring us back to God. So in our spiritual journeys, we do not do good things to make God like us, we develop virtue because God has already loved us.