“Whereby are given unto us great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the Divine Nature.” — 2Pe_1:4.
PRECIOUS FAITH and precious promise are necessarily linked together (2Pe_1:1-4). The promises excite the faith, and faith reckons upon the fulfilment of promise. One is sometimes asked why it is that God’s Word seems to fail, and that the righteous do appear to be forsaken! But surely the reason is, not that there is any failure on God’s side to fulfil His promises, but that the promise is not claimed. It is possible to carry around a pocket-full of bank notes and cheques, and to die of starvation because they have not been cashed. When you have found a promise that just fits your need, do not rest content until you have laid it before God, and claimed its fulfilment.
Note that everything which is needed for life and godliness is already granted to us in Jesus our Lord (2Pe_1:3). We have not to pray to our Father for things which He has not anticipated, but to claim those which He has already given. The one purpose of God’s preparation is that we should not only escape the corruption which is in the world, but become “partakers of His Divine Nature.” What a marvellous promise is this, which almost passes human thought and comprehension, that we should become animated and filled by the very nature of God!
Note the recurrence of the phrase “these things” in the following verses. When they abound in us we cannot be idle or unfruitful. The octave of qualities enumerated reminds us of those Chinese boxes, each of which contains a smaller one, until we finally arrive at some precious article enclosed in the innermost. Faith apprehends everything else—manly courage, knowledge, sell-control, patience, godliness, kindness, and above all, love. To be deficient in “these things” is to be short-sighted (R.V.).
The Apostle says that the soul which has incorporated into itself these qualities of character will be welcomed into the Eternal Kingdom. It will enter the Harbour royally, with every sail set and pennant flying, and receive a choral entrance from the eager crowds that await its approach (2Pe_1:11). Let us be diligent in our appropriation of God’s great and precious promises, so that we shall never fail.
Grant us, O Lord, we beseech Thee, always to seek Thy kingdom and righteousness; and of whatsoever Thou seest us to stand in need, mercifully grant us an abundant portion; through Jesus Christ our Lord. AMEN.