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April 3, 2005 PM

2 PET 1:2,2

INTRO: Peters second letter is filled with great and needed reminders. In fact, he tells us in 1:15 that his purpose in writing was to remind disciples, even after his death, of great, imperishable truths. In the two verses we have read there are wonderful gospel words: faith, grace, peace. Our thoughts will note these words in the context in which appear in these verses.


A. It was something obtained

1. thus, it is not faith as a subjective, individual thing

2. rather, it is the great truths, gospel truths, which must be believed to have the blessing of the gospel

3. how do I know? because it can be obtained

4. Gal 1:23 - preached the faith - here is the message of faith

B. It was something uniform to/for all

1. the word like means equal - same as (with us)

2. the apostles, the Jews had no leg up on others - the faith they obeyed is the same for all - even for us

3. Acts 10:34,35 - the great equality!

4. though 2000 years removed from apostle Peter, message is the same

C. It was something precious

1. coming from Peter this was special emphasis

2. he knew the preciousness of the message he had preached for decades - had seen its impact on lives - and he anticipated!

3. 1 Cor 1:20-24 - so many do think of the message as foolishness

4. but to us who have been redeemed it is truly precious - without this message we would truly be no hopers

D. It was something possible because of Gods righteousness

1. righteousness refers to the equity, the rightness of God

2. it had been Gods purpose to make salvation available to all nations ... not only to the Jews

3. Gen 12:3 with Gal 3:8

4. God has provided - to accept or reject is our decision


A. Grace and peace are often found together in the scriptures

1. for example: Rom 1:7 - 1 Cor 1:3 - Gal 1:3 (etc.)

2. grace and peace are blessings we enjoy because of the message of faith

3. the grace of God and the peace that passes understanding cannot be experienced apart from the gospel

B. Grace and peace can be multiplied

1. here is a truly exciting possibility

2. grace and peace are not events ... they are blessings which can increase in our Christian lives

3. grace and peace are indispensable blessings which make our Christian walk joyful ... faithful

C. Grace and peace increase how?

1. through the knowledge... - not the ordinary word for knowledge ... this word is more than facts

2. a word which speaks of an ever deepening personal knowledge - so, 2 Tim 1:12 ... I know whom I have believed

3. or Jno 17:3 - this is a living participation in the truth

4. an increasing awareness & appreciation of the blessings through deep and loving contemplation

5. and this increasing leads to impact in our lives by way of understanding and trusting more and more

CLOSE: Our blessings are from God ... from Jesus our Lord. But our blessings become more profound to us in a living participation with God and with Jesus our Lord.

Cecil A. Hutson

April 3, 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) "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." (Romans 10:17)

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)