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Eyes Wide Open: 2 Peter 1:5-11

Rhythms: All-Out Effort
John Witte

For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, 6 and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, 7 and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. 8 For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins. 10 Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities, you will never fall. 11 For in this way, there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.—2 Peter 1:5–11 (ESV)
Today’s lesson is part two of our 8-week study, Eyes Wide Open, a verse-by-verse study of 2 Peter. John Witte reminded us of the power of being captivated by a hobby, a fad, and, most powerfully, a person. Our focus is dominated, as is most of our time, energy, and resources. It’s a bit of an obsession! Last week, as we started our study, we saw that Peter knew that whatever captivates us dominates us and determines the outcome of our lives.

QUESTION— Are you a sports fan? Tell the group which teams you follow and how “into it” you are.

QUESTION— Our lives become focused when we are obsessed with something or someone. Beyond sports, what are you obsessed with right now? How does that affect the use of your time, energy, and resources?

READ— 2 Peter 1:5-7

QUESTION— In verse 5, what does it mean to “make every effort to supplement your faith”? Isn’t faith enough?

READ— Colossians 3:5-17

QUESTION— John Witte said being virtuous means “clean up what you know is
messed up.” Which things on the list need the most attention in your life?

QUESTION— 2 Peter 1:6 names “self-control” as the first step after knowledge.
How does self-control relate to “put to death therefore what is earthly in you” in Colossians 3:5?

QUESTION— In verse 7, why does Peter separate “brotherly affection” from love? What do you think he means by that?

READ— 2 Peter 1:8-11

QUESTION— In verse 8, what does Peter mean by “if these qualities are yours and are increasing”?

QUESTION— Do you need eyeglasses to help your vision? What’s it like to navigate the world without them on? Verse 9 says it is possible to be saved and “blind.” If a Christian is spiritually blind, what will their life be like?

QUESTION— In 2 Peter 1:10, Peter says it is our responsibility to confirm our
“calling and election.” The old cliché says, “actions speak louder than words.” What aspects of your lifestyle are inconsistent with your faith in Christ?


DIG DEEPER: Self-control

The Bible does not tell us how to exercise self-control in every situation but
encourages us to rely on God.

READ— 1 Corinthians 9:24-27

In this passage, Paul draws on a sports example that would have resonated with the readers of Corinth, steeped in Hellenistic culture. We, too, should apply tremendous effort and, as John Witte said, “leave it all on the field.”

READ— 1 Corinthians 7:9, Galatians. 5:23 and Titus 1:8

Each of these verses are drawn from passages extolling the virtue and necessity of selfcontrol. We are indeed saved by grace, but from that point forward, it is our responsibility to be “all in” as we follow Jesus.

MEMORIZE—
For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, 6 and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, 7 and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love.—2 Peter 1:5–7

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