Long ago Solomon said that there is nothing new under the sun, and the longer I live, the more convinced I am that he was right. Take, for example, management.
You want to open an office in another town or city, and you cannot be on location to see whether the manager or the staff are on the job. You want to add another salesperson and when he’s on the road, you have no way of knowing whether he is drinking coffee somewhere or out making his calls. What do you do? You strive to manage by agreeing on certain objectives which should be reached; then you measure progress by what is accomplished.
I’ve wondered at times if Peter, the disciple who was a fisherman before he became one of the twelve who walked with Jesus, practiced managing by objective in his fishing business. I know he understood the principle because he applied it to our walk with the Lord.
In the second letter which Peter wrote, he described the objective: making our calling and election sure. He said, “…for if you do these things, you will never fall, and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” (2 Peter 1:10-11). That was the objective. Now, how do you get there?
Peter lays down the premise by saying that God’s “divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him whocalled us by His own glory and goodness…” Peter talks about the promises of God which provide knowledge, and understanding of God’s will and the path that each of us should take with our lives. Then Peter talks about a progression of steps or attributes which we need to work on.
The amazing thing to me is that Peter described the tools which I need today to stay on top of things, and this book was written almost 2000 years ago. What an amazing grasp of human nature. Peter was really gifted, right? Yes and no. Peter had insights which came through experience. He had been in the company of those who walked with Jesus. He also had the guidance of the Holy Spirit as He wrote.
Peter told us want we need. I’ll give it to you, but make a note of the first chapter of 2 Peter and spend some time applying these principles to your life.
First, he says, add to your faith, goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance [staying with the task]; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love (vss 5-7). Then he gives them the bottom line: “For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 1:8). Then almost anticipating the response of those who read his letters, Peter in his distinctive bluntness says, “But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past.
No question about Peter’s goal–he didn’t want to lose any of the fish he caught! He reflected God’s desire to see us walk with Him and stay above the downward tug of that which would turn our hearts away from God.
Friend, life hasn’t changed. What worked for Peter works today. Make a note of 2 Peter 1 and check it out for yourself. You will find that having a goal and working towards it pays off–whether it is in your spiritual life or in your company or business. Try it.
Resource Reading: 2 Peter
Text: For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 2 Peter 1:5-8
GUIDELINES with Harold Sala – August 16, 2017