Cecil Hutson Sermon Archive
April 10, 2005 PM
THE BLESSING OF KNOWLEDGE
2 PET 1:3,4
INTRO: These opening verses of Peters second letter are packed full of great truths. If I tried to characterize the first four verses of the letter, I would probably have to say, They are showing us the blessing of knowledge. In a previous lesson we saw that grace and peace are multiplied through the knowledge of God and of Jesus. But that was not all! There was more! So, vv. 3,4 reveal more of the blessings which come through the knowledge of the Lord Who has called us.
I. THINK ABOUT KNOWLEDGE
A. Jno 8:32 - Know the truth
1. Jno 17:17 - thy word is truth
2. clearly, knowledge of Gods word is necessary to any spiritual life
B. But the word knowledge in 2 Pet 1:2,3 is a bit different
1. knowledge of the word is there; but it is a deeper, affecting knowledge (actually, a different word than often used of knowledge)
2. there is a deep appreciation and participation in/with truth (note 1 Tim 4:3 where know is from the same word)
II. ALL THINGS PERTAINING TO LIFE AND GODLINESS
A. This knowledge of/from the Lord is all sufficient
1. this is a critical point - what else is there?
2. the latter day revelations of men, women, councils, movements must be spurious if the knowledge supplied by the scriptures is all sufficient
3. 2 Tim 3:14-17
B. About life
1. Jno 6:63 -the words that I speak...they are life
2. at Lev 17:11 - life is in the blood - but for a spiritual life life is in the word!!
3. Deut 32:45-47 - ...it is your life...
C. About godliness
1. Titus 2:12 - live...godly
2. godly - to possess characteristics of God
3. note Mt 5:43-48 - this love is godly ... is is a characteristic of God which we must possess
III. GREAT AND PRECIOUS PROMISES
A. Here is another blessing of knowledge
1. if we have no knowledge of the scriptures, the great promises of God will simply be unknown to us
2. if the promises are unknown, they can make no impact
3. one aspect of Gods promises must be their influence on the manner of our lives
B. What promises might these be?
1. 1 Jno 2:25 - of eternal life
2. Heb 12:5 - of His abiding presence
3. Rom 8:28,29 - of goods coming out of tragedy
4. 1 Pet 3:12 - of His hearing our prayers
5. in each case, however, the promise depends on our appropriating it into our lives in practical anticipation and participation
IV. SHARING IN DIVINE NATURE
A. What is this?
1. obviously, it is not characteristics of Deity
2. it must, therefore, have reference to some essential part of the nature of the divine
B. 1 Pet 1:14-16 - Be ye holy; for I am holy
1. separation from sin, from impurity - 1 Cor 7:1
2. note in 2 Pet 1:4 that this is attached to our having escaped the corruption that is in the world...
3. throughout the N.T. the call is to holiness - Christians are called saints
4. Eph 1:22-24 - created...in true holiness
5. from the cleansing in baptism throughout life we are intended to be holy people - 1 Thes 4:7
6. so, Rom 12:2 (the place of knowledge and the mind
CLOSE: All knowledge has its place, its purpose. But only the knowledge which comes from scripture can bring blessings of a truly abundant life.
Cecil A. Hutson
April 10, 2005
God's Plan of Salvation
You must hear the gospel and then understand and recognize that you are lost without Jesus Christ no matter who you are and no matter what your background is. The Bible tells us that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) Before you can be saved, you must understand that you are lost and that the only way to be saved is by obedience to the gospel of Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:8) Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12)
You must believe and have faith in God because “without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6) But neither belief alone nor faith alone is sufficient to save. (James 2:19; James 2:24; Matthew 7:21)
You must repent of your sins. (Acts 3:19) But repentance alone is not enough. The so-called “Sinner’s Prayer” that you hear so much about today from denominational preachers does not appear anywhere in the Bible. Indeed, nowhere in the Bible was anyone ever told to pray the “Sinner’s Prayer” to be saved. By contrast, there are numerous examples showing that prayer alone does not save. Saul, for example, prayed following his meeting with Jesus on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:11), but Saul was still in his sins when Ananias met him three days later (Acts 22:16). Cornelius prayed to God always, and yet there was something else he needed to do to be saved (Acts 10:2, 6, 33, 48). If prayer alone did not save Saul or Cornelius, prayer alone will not save you. You must obey the gospel. (2 Thess. 1:8)
You must confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. (Romans 10:9-10) Note that you do NOT need to make Jesus “Lord of your life.” Why? Because Jesus is already Lord of your life whether or not you have obeyed his gospel. Indeed, we obey him, not to make him Lord, but because he already is Lord. (Acts 2:36) Also, no one in the Bible was ever told to just “accept Jesus as your personal savior.” We must confess that Jesus is the Son of God, but, as with faith and repentance, confession alone does not save. (Matthew 7:21)
Having believed, repented, and confessed that Jesus is the Son of God, you must be baptized for the remission of your sins. (Acts 2:38) It is at this point (and not before) that your sins are forgiven. (Acts 22:16) It is impossible to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ without teaching the absolute necessity of baptism for salvation. (Acts 8:35-36; Romans 6:3-4; 1 Peter 3:21) Anyone who responds to the question in Acts 2:37 with an answer that contradicts Acts 2:38 is NOT proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ!
Once you are saved, God adds you to his church and writes your name in the Book of Life. (Acts 2:47; Philippians 4:3) To continue in God’s grace, you must continue to serve God faithfully until death. Unless they remain faithful, those who are in God’s grace will fall from grace, and those whose names are in the Book of Life will have their names blotted out of that book. (Revelation 2:10; Revelation 3:5; Galatians 5:4)