The Bible says in 2 Peter 1: 5-11 “And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.“
Therefore, if faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness, and charity abound in you, you will receive an abundant entrance (Hero’s welcome into heaven.
Now we will look at each one of these attributes individually:
Faith is trusting God that He will do what He says, before He does it.
Hebrews 11:1 “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”
Faith of course is the first thing you need, because you cannot even get saved without faith.
Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:”
You cannot even began to please God without Faith.
Hebrews 11:6 “But 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.”
We must have faith that God will save us and answer our prayers if we diligently seek Him. Meaning we must be fully committed and obedient to Him. We cannot just cry out to Him when we are in trouble, and then forget about Him the rest of the time.
Virtue is courage and an outward showing of our faith.
To have virtue means that you have enough faith to stand alone for God against the whole world believing that God will cause you to win against the whole world.
One with God is a majority!
2 Samuel 23:8 “These be the names of the mighty men whom David had: The Tachmonite that sat in the seat, chief among the captains; the same was Adino the Eznite: he lift up his spear against eight hundred, whom he slew at one time.“
2 Samuel 23:9 “And after him was Eleazar the son of Dodo the Ahohite, one of the three mighty men with David, when they defied the Philistines that were there gathered together to battle, and the men of Israel were gone away: He arose, and smote the Philistines until his hand was weary, and his hand clave unto the sword: and the LORD wrought a great victory that day; and the people returned after him only to spoil.”
It also means that you will stay faithful to God even in the face of death, torture, financial loss, loss of health, and isolation. And not only concerning yourself, but others also.
Matthew 10:39 “He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it.”
Matthew 10:37 “He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.”
I personally have suffered financial loss, loss of health, death, and isolation for Christ. God has now delivered me from all but the isolation. I find isolation the most challenging, but being delivered from the other problems has considerably lightened my burden.
However, I have never backed down. I still preach the same things that got me into trouble in the first place. And I still believe that God will cause me to win.
My life is not my own, and if I left God, where else could I go?
1 Corinthians 6:19-20a “What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price:”
John 6:67-69 Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away? Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God.”
You must constantly increase in knowledge of the Bible in order to know more about how to serve Jesus and tell others about Him.
Furthermore, the more we study the Bible the more God approves of us.
2 Timothy 2:15 “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”
Temperance means that you have self control to keep from falling into sin.
One thing that will help to increase your temperance is to avoid sin.
Proverbs 4:14-15 “ Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not in the way of evil men. Avoid it, pass not by it, turn from it, and pass away.”
Proverbs 23:31-33 “Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder. Thine eyes shall behold strange women, and thine heart shall utter perverse things.”
James 1:14 “But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.”
If you are suddenly faced with any temptation, take the way of escape. Sometimes you may just have to quickly leave the situation.
1 Corinthians 10:13 “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.”
We are to be patient with everyone.
1 Thessalonians 5:14 “Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men.“
Godliness is holiness. This means that you consistently do your best to obey God in all things.
We are commanded to be Holy.
Romans 12:1 “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”
1 Peter 1:15-16 “But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.”
If godliness abounds in you, then people do not have to wonder if you are a Christian, they can quickly see that you are, by your actions.
This means you are kind to other Christians.
Romans 12:10 Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another;
Romans 12:13 “Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality.”
Romans 12:15 “Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep.”
1 Thessalonians 5:14 “Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men.”
The feebleminded are those who suffer from things like depression and anxiety.
We are to be patient and comfort these people.
The weak are those who are sick or disabled and cannot work. The word support in that verse actually means to adopt, even to the point of financial responsibility. (Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible with Hebrew and Greek dictionaries G4722 which roots back to G2192 which can mean “Go to law” this would be for an adoption or obtaining legal guardianship over a person who cannot take care of themselves.)
And this is not speaking of the church as a whole supporting these people, but individual Christians.
1 Timothy 6:17-19 “Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.”
Romans 12:16 “Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits.”
Charity is the bond of perfectness. Charity includes everything above and more.
Charity is love in action and it includes you attitude and motives.
You can die for Christ, and give all your goods to the poor and not have charity if your attitude and motives are wrong.
1 Corinthians 13:
1 “Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.
2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.
3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.
4 Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;
7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
8a Charity never faileth:”
To have true charity you must be:
- Not Envious of what others have
- Not rude or inconsiderate
- Seek to help others not just enrich yourself
- Not have a short temper
- Have no evil thoughts
- Have no pleasure in sin, but in the truth
- Bear all burdens – Not run away from responsibility
- Believe everything the Bible says, and believe everything else that people tell them that does not contradict the Bible and is proven right.
- Have a steadfast hope that all of God’s promises for deliverance will come to pass
- Endure all trouble and stay faithful to Christ till death
Therefore, if you focus on abounding in these things: faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness, and charity, you will receive an abundant entrance (Hero’s welcome into heaven.)