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Judges 7. Gideon, part 30: The divine nature and supplying virtue.

JUDGES-7-170404
length: 66:11 - taught on Apr, 4 2017
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Title: Judges 7. Gideon, part 30: The divine nature and supplying virtue.      

 

Announcements:

 

2PE 1:1 Simon Peter, a bond-servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, to those who have received a faith of the same kind as ours, by the righteousness of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ:

 

2PE 1:2 Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge [epignosis = complete appropriation of all truth and unreserved acquiescence to God's will] of God and of Jesus our Lord;

 

2PE 1:3 seeing that His divine power [saving mankind in Christ] has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.

 

2PE 1:4 For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, in order that by them you might become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust.

 

We have become ones who fellowship with the divine nature. We have been regenerated and made creatures of a divine origin.

 

1PE 1:23

you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and abiding word of God.

 

It seems odd that you fellowship with or partner up with the new creature in Christ that you are. Such a call could only mean that you are made up of two people. Do we have a dual nature? In a way we do and they fight like Jacob and Esau in Rachel's womb. However, one of our natures is dead and the other alive. The believer is no longer under the control of the sin nature, for that nature has been crucified with Christ. We have put off the old man and put on the new. We are clothed with Christ. Yet it is clear that the old man does temp us to think and conduct ourselves in his way, which way is only an echo of a dead man. We are now of a seed that is imperishable and we carry some ignorance of that nature since none of us have full knowledge. We are an imperishable seed but we are temptable. Our epignosis knowledge of our divine seed must continually increase under the ministry of God the Holy Spirit. And all the while, there will be stronger and milder temptations from the sin nature to not increase our knowledge.

 

[turn to so you can add some exegesis to your Bible]

1JO 3:9

No one who is born of God practices [habitual] sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin [present infinitive = habitually], because he is born of God.

 

This verse has always  been a scary one for believers, but it shouldn’t be. When we look into it without jumping to conclusions we see that John is talking about habitual sin. Greek, like other languages can convey things in verb conjugation and noun declension that we use extra words to explain in English.

 

A great deal of false theology has come from a misunderstanding of the tense of the verb "to sin."

 

"Practices" is the present tense of the verb poieo, to do, which always means a habitual doing, and the present infinitive of harmatano (to sin, to miss the mark) with the negative ou dunatai (he cannot) would mean that he is no longer able to habitually miss the mark of God's divine will. Believers become conscious of their fallings into sin when they read this verse and that in itself is an indication of the divine seed within. The unbeliever would have no such response. The seed is to flourish into a beautiful mature plant. That is your election in Christ. When the believer fails, it is like bad weather that stunts the growth of the seed, but with a believer, that weather pattern will not habitually persist. Even with the Corinthians we have seen repentance in grace. The unbeliever would never even consider it.

 

In Romans, Paul has the same idea as John:

 

ROM 6:1-2

What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace might increase? May it never be!

 

Being done to us and for us, such a divine nature has its natural result. Technically it is supernatural, but since the believer in Christ is a supernatural creature [no longer of this world] the resultant life of who we are is now natural.

 

2PE 1:4 For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, in order that by them you might become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust.

 

Corruption is due to the old sin nature.

 

The fall of man brought a curse upon the world and collectively man lusts in his flesh and eyes. All of the fallen are trapped in this corruption, but through the grace of God, the believer has been set free from it.

 

The believer has to come to know this truth through the word of God. Such a reality gets to the heart of true Christian living in this world. The life of the believer is a call to true power and not the façade of power that comes from men living like men who are nice and moral some of the time. This is truly the life of Christ in the believer and not some facsimile of it. We study and learn consistently so that we may walk only in the divine nature and not be fooled by the human one.

 

So, since this is true:

2PE 1:5 Now for this very reason [for this very cause] also, applying all diligence [spoudazo: intense effort], in your faith supply moral excellence [virtue], and in your moral excellence, knowledge;

 

"supply" - develop one virtue in the exercise of another; each new grace springing out of attempting and perfecting the other.

 

But it is not as though we ever become perfect of complete. We never achieve all faith and virtue, and so, to the word "supply" we see virtue grow out of faith in God's word and out of virtue grows knowledge and so on. As we mature in one of these divine virtues we exercise the others in more maturity as well.

 

The Greek word is epichoregeo which means to supply. The verb voice is active which means that the believer must supply this chorus of seven to his life. He cannot simply add them. He must learn the word of God continually under the ministry of God the Holy Spirit and then he will come to know what they are and also understand that he has the power to do them. He also comes to understand through doctrine how important they are, how rewarding to himself and others, how they glorify God, and how they make for victory in the invisible conflict. With these truths firmly established in his soul, he will choose to walk in them.

 

2PE 1:5 Now for this very reason [for this very cause] also, applying all diligence [spoudazo: intense effort], in your faith supply moral excellence [virtue], and in your moral excellence, knowledge;

 

2PE 1:6 and in your knowledge, self-control [holding passions and desires in check], and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness;

 

2PE 1:7 and in your godliness, brotherly kindness, and in your brotherly kindness, love [agape].

 

Faith: believe divine character and who you are.

Virtue: fruit of the Spirit.

Knowledge: more truth.

Self-control: holding passions and desires in check.

 

Perseverance: remaining under trial and testing in a way that glorifies God.

Godliness: worship well or properly.

Brotherly kindness: affection, fondness, and charity for royal family.

Agape love: sacrifice of life for the benefit of others.

 

This is a list similar to Paul's fruit of the Spirit. It has slight differences since with Paul the Holy Spirit is focusing on the inner war of the flesh and the Spirit, but with Peter the emphasis is the election of the believer by God and how that election is important in the whole purpose of God for human history.

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