Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Grow in Grace and Knowledge

2 Peter 3:18

But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen.

20140530-104833-38913743.jpgFriday I wrote how our nation was founded on Biblical principles – quoting the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible in our constitution. But in recent history there have been a number of folks who seemingly have made it their business to remove God from everything societal – everything governmental. Attacking Christians is common place in the media while protecting those who are leading us astray.

I wrote that as God was and is being removed from our schools – our government halls – our lives as Americans – we have seen – and we are seeing – the decay and destruction of our nation. A Godless nation will not carry God’s protection. As filth and decadence are accepted as societal norms – things that would never have been approved when we were one nation under God – we will continue to see the greatest nation in the world suffer and fall. This is not prophecy – I believe it is very clear and believe that any reasonable person should be able to see this truth.

Friday I also wrote that as the United Methodist Church follows after the world’s filth and sin – we are seeing a once powerful and Godly denomination fall apart. A denomination that can trace its roots back to the first two great awakenings (see notes below) and their call to personal holiness is in danger of losing God’s protection and blessing by allowing some to lead us astray as they follow after the world’s ways rather than after Christ – IMHO.

The first Great Awakening – spearheaded by men like George Whitefield and Jonathan Edwards – in the 1730’s and 1740’s – spread holiness throughout Protestant Europe and the British Americas – and especially in the American Colonies. It was a call to personal holiness and a personal relationship with Jesus. The first Great Awakening focused mainly on those in the church – calling the churched to this personal holiness – this turning from sin and turning toward God.

In the second Great Awakening – where men like John & Charles Wesley spearheaded a call to salvation – to personal holiness – focused not only on those in the church but most importantly on the unchurched – the unsaved. Again – the focus was to move away from the sins of the world and move toward holiness akin to the walk of Jesus.

One of my new favorite sayings is the more the world moves away from God the more a Christian should stand out. Unfortunately – some in the church today – and not just the United Methodist Church – but many mainline denominations – are following hard after the world’s sin instead of standing for orthodox Christ like morals and values.

Let’s look at today’s passage in partial context. 2 Peter 3:1-18 – 1Dear friends, this is now my second letter to you. I have written both of them as reminders to stimulate you to wholesome thinking. I want you to recall the words spoken in the past by the holy prophets and the command given by our Lord and Savior through your apostles. Above all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. 4 They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our ancestors died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.” But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens came into being and the earth was formed out of water and by water. By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed. By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly. But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. 10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything done in it will be laid bare.  11 Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives 12 as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming.  That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. 13 But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells. 14 So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him. 15 Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him. 16 He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction. 17 Therefore, dear friends, since you have been forewarned, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless and fall from your secure position. 18 But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen.

My prayer – dear readers – is that we will all grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. As I have written before – seek His face – while we desire His grace. Set your hearts and minds on Jesus and not on the world around us!

Just something to think about today as you go on your way.

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July 7, 2014 - Posted by | Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Denomination, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Holy Spirit, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , , , ,

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