Sunday, January 06, 2013

375. What It Means to Grow in Grace

The Apostle Peter encouraged believers to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. When we think of growing in grace, what will usually come to mind? Improving or modifying our behavior? Trying to do more for God? Working harder and hoping our efforts will be acceptable to Him? Praying and studying the Bible more? Perhaps it's much less complicated. Maybe it's more about rest. After all, grace and righteousness came to us apart from works.

What It Means to Grow in Grace (14 Min, 9.6 MB)
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  1. I use to think the term grow meaning to try your best as well. I know that Paul mentions that to grow in the knowledge of our lord Jesus Christ. However I don't think he means to try our best to succeed. The Bible says to put no confidence in the flesh. Instead in the living God that raises the dead.

    We simply rest in the finished work of Christ, God works through us!

  2. Yep, you've hit the nail on the head. This is what is sorely missed in the church today. Our confidence (for daily living, not just for our initial salvation) is in the living God who raises the dead, not in our fleshly attempts at trying our best to live for Him.

  3. You guys touched on this a bit, but as I listened, my mind went to the word "knowledge" and I questioned; "what did Paul mean by that? Was he implying that we need to read our Bibles every day and fill our minds with knowledge about Christ? When I read "knowledge of the Lord Jesus," I hear Paul speaking more to an intimacy with Christ, over an intellectual knowledge of him. Like you guys stated; it's the "knowledge" spouses have with each other. Intimacy (knowledge) with Christ results in "growth in grace," but intellectual knowledge often results in rules and expectations, which has little room for grace.

    I'd be curious to know what the original word and meaning for "knowledge" is in this instance.

  4. I really think that Peter's use of the word can mean both. The actual word that Peter used in 2 Peter 3:18, in the phrase "grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ" is Gnosis. It means "knowledge" in the sense that we normally use the word. "Acquaintance with facts, truths or principles, as from study or investigation." That's the word that Peter used in this instance.

    The word that it's derived from (rooted in) is Ginosko, which is the form of the word that means the type of intimacy that, say, Adam and Eve would have had. The two words don't mean exactly the same thing, but of course the word that another word is rooted in is important.

    So I believe that Peter is talking about being acquainted with the facts, truths and principles about Jesus Christ (the intellectual understanding of who He is and who we are in Him, etc), and at the same time, to really know God does indeed go far beyond intellectual understanding. It goes to the deeper type of intimate "knowing."