Grace Bible Church
Tree of Life
A Weekly Review
Week ending 020815
Review of 2014
The Manifestation of the Greatest Drama - Your Life.
There are basically three important Elections in Human history.
ISA 45:4, “For the sake of Jacob My servant, And Israel My elected one, I have also called you by your name; I have given you a title of honor though you have not known Me.”
ISA 42:1, “Behold, My Servant, whom I uphold; My elected one in whom My soul delights. I have put My Spirit upon Him; He will bring forth justice to the nations.”
MAT 12:18, “Behold, My Servant whom I have elected; My Beloved in whom My soul is well‑pleased; I will put My Spirit upon Him, And He shall proclaim justice to the Gentiles.”
LUK 9:35, And a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is My Son, My Chosen One; listen to Him!”
- Then the Church lives under the pre-designed plan of God (PPOG), COL 3:12, And so, as those who have been elected of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience;
Each election also brought a new category of species into history.
First, the Jews or Israel became the new racial species and are called the people of God.
DEU 7:6-8, “For you are a holy people to the Lord your God; the Lord your God has chosen you to be a people for His own possession out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth. The Lord did not set His love on you nor choose you because you were more in number than any of the peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples, but because the Lord loved you and kept the oath which He swore to your forefathers, the Lord brought you out by a mighty hand, and redeemed you from the house of slavery, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt.”
This is one of the main reasons why there are problems in the Middle East between the Arabs and the Jews.
There are countries like Egypt; Iran; Iraq; Saudi Arabia; Turkey; Jordan; Kuwait; Syria; Lebanon - and also others who are not even from the Middle East, like China, Korea, and Russia, just to name a few. The point is that the majority of the countries of the world disagree with what we just read in DEU 7:6-8, that the Jews our God's chosen people. But then, again, the Bible teaches that the majority is usually always wrong.
Moses told the Jews in EXO 23:2, “You shall not follow a multitude in doing evil, nor shall you testify in a dispute so as to turn aside after a multitude in order to pervert justice;”
In GEN 6:12 the reason for the flood is related to the reprobate majority which is why we read for God looked on the earth, and behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted their way upon the earth. And what greater illustration that the majority is always wrong than what we have in the Gospel of Mark chapter 15.
MAR 15:11-15, But the chief priests stirred up the multitude to ask him to release Barabbas for them instead. And answering again, Pilate was saying to them, “Then what shall I do with Him whom you call the King of the Jews?” And they shouted back, “Crucify Him!” But Pilate was saying to them, “Why, what evil has He done?” But they shouted all the more, “Crucify Him!” And wishing to satisfy the multitude [majority], Pilate released Barabbas for them, and after having Jesus scourged, he delivered Him to be crucified. And they [majority] shouted back, “Crucify Him!” But Pilate was saying to them, “Why, what evil has He done?” But they [majority] shouted all the more, “Crucify Him!” And wishing to satisfy the multitude [majority], Pilate released Barabbas for them, and after having Jesus scourged, he delivered Him to be crucified.
So, we have the election of the Jews or Israel who became the new racial species and called the people of God.
Secondly, there is the election of Christ as a unique species called the God-man which brought in the hypostatic union, i.e. undiminished deity and true humanity in one person forever, 1TI 3:16, And by common confession great is the mystery of godliness: He who was revealed in the flesh, Was vindicated in the Spirit, Beheld by angels, Proclaimed among the nations, Believed on in the world, Taken up in glory.
Thirdly, the one that really applies to all of us, the election of the Church which brought in the new spiritual species called the new creature, the Church or Royal Family of God, 2CO 5:17; GAL 6:15.
GAL 6:15, For neither is circumcision anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation.
In our day and age we could say, GAL 6:15, For neither is water baptism important or not being baptized of any importance, but only whether you are a new creation. Or we could say, For neither is walking down an aisle or not walking down an aisle or speaking in tongues or not speaking in tongues or asking Jesus into your heart or your life of any importance, but only whether you are a new creation = by faith alone in Christ alone.
In 2PE 1:1, Simon Peter, a bond‑servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, to those who have received a faith of the same kind as ours, by the righteousness of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ:
This means that every believer starts out with the same amount of faith but none of us end up that way. We all start out with an equal amount of faith and then we are given equal privilege and equal opportunity to cultivate or develop that faith. After that, equality no longer exists.
2PE 1:2, Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord;
Under election, this is prosperity, that is spiritual prosperity, in many cases, social prosperity, mental prosperity, and for those who have a capacity, economic prosperity, etc.
So we have “Grace to you and prosperity be multiplied or increased.”
Next we have the divine viewpoint on how grace and prosperity is multiplied, with a prepositional phrase, en plus the instrumental of epignosis - which means literally “through the instrument of metabolized doctrine.”
Epignosis translated knowledge is metabolized doctrine. And so it should read Grace to you and peace be multiplied by means of epignosis knowledge or metabolized doctrine.
Now, don't miss this; grace and prosperity be multiplied to you by means of what? Works? Giving? Praying? Serving? No! “By means of the knowledge of God and of Christ Jesus our Lord.” Multiplication of grace and prosperity comes from learning more about the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.
In 2PE 1:3, seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness,
The divine power is the ministry of God the Holy Spirit, ACT 1:8 as well as Bible doctrine, HEB 4:12.
2PE 1:3, seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.
Notice again the phrase, this all comes through the true knowledge of Him [there's epignosis again or metabolized doctrine] who called us by His own glory and excellence.
2PE 1:4, For by these [His doctrine, His glory, His excellence] He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, in order that by them [His glory, excellence, and His precious and magnificent fantastic promises] you might become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world [cosmic system] by lust.
In verses 5-7, we have our subject of election and how to receive what we have been elected to receive.
Remember the misnomer is that the doctrine of election has to deal with salvation only, but it does not. Salvation is only the beginning of the doctrine of election.
EPH 2:8-10 gives us one of the best pictures of this principle.
EPH 2:8-9, For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, that no one should boast.
There is the beginning of your election in time, for remember in EPH 1:4, we were actually “chosen or elected in Him” in eternity past. However, in EPH 2:10, your election continues. After salvation, what have you been elected to?
EPH 2:10, For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for [the purpose of performing] good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
We have not only been elected to be saved but also to glorify God, especially in the midst of the angelic conflict.
And so in 2PE 1:5, the apostle Peter takes us back the 5th century B.C., in Athens and what we call Greek Drama. Athens was filled with men of great genius. Men like Socrates, Plato, Aristotle. This was a wonderful period of time when Greek thought was at its peak. And there was one area that they developed in a fantastic way and that is an area we call “drama.” And so, we will now look upon the study of Greek drama in verses 5-7 and how it applies to your life in a fantastic way.
2PE 1:5, Now for this very reason also, [because He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises in verse 4], applying all diligence or making every effort, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge;
Now, we need to note some original language here. The verb translated “applying all diligence” is the aor-act-part of the verb pa-re-is-phe-ro which means to make every effort, to make a constant effort or having made every effort. And of course, it goes back to the most important mandate or command.
MAR 12:30, and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.'
2PE 1:5, Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence or virtue, and in your virtue, knowledge;
Now, here is where the verb comes up that introduces Greek drama and a chorus line about to come up and how it relates magnificently to our subject of election and what we have been elected for. You see the chorus line is about to mentioned coming up in verse 5-7. The chorus line is made up of the following.
In 2PE 1:5, virtue and knowledge;
In 2PE 1:6 self‑control, perseverance, godliness or devotion and dedication toward living the spiritual life;
In 2PE 1:7, brotherly kindness which is love for the brethren, and then impersonal love for all mankind.
The main verb is found in verse 5, the verb is translated “applying all diligence” which is the aor-act-imp of the verb epichoregeo = a word which was used for the man who provided the finances to train the Greek actors of the day. The group of actors was called the chorego or the chorus which was made up of a small group of very excellent dancers and singers. And the spiritual analogy is that the training of the chorus was the most important part of the drama, just like your training as a disciple is the most important part of your drama. And may I say some of you have a real drama when it comes to your life.
Remember, the chorus in Greek drama was the key to understanding everything. They would sing the lines of the play. They would set the mood. They were like the narrators of the story. Now, the chorus or the choregeo were trained to perfection and it cost a tremendous amount of money and it took about a year to train them. They had to learn the lines. They had to learn the dances and everything else that was involved.
They had to have an epichoregeo, someone who would sponsor them, a sugar daddy as it were. They had to have someone who would come along with a pocket full of money to pay for the yearly expenses. And so epichoregeo came to mean supply or to support. It meant supply everything that is necessary or needed. It was very expensive for the epichoregeo to supply and support all the money needed for the Greek chorus but...no more expensive in concept than what it takes to be a winner in the Christian life. That's why we read in PRO 23:23, Buy truth, and do not sell it, Get wisdom and instruction and understanding. In this context, our epichoregeo is “faith” which supplies all that we need, such as character, virtue, knowledge; self‑control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly love, impersonal love for all mankind.
So in 2PE 1:5 we have, epichoregeo (applying all diligence) by means of your faith. In your faith is the prepositional phrase “en plus the instrumental of the noun pistis which means by the instrument or the means of your faith. Pistis has 3 meanings, one which has a passive connotation as it does here, which means “that which is believed” or the “body of truth” and therefore doctrine. So the whole phrase is saying, “Furnish or supply by means of your doctrine.” Metabolized doctrine is the supplier of your very own personal drama.
So, we have the phrase in 2PE 1:5, Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in or by means of your doctrine supply...
The point is that it is your faith or your doctrine that is the main actor in your very own drama of life.
2PE 1:5, Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence or making every effort, furnish or supply by means of your very own doctrine, moral excellence,
Moral excellence is the Greek word arête which means manliness, excellence, virtue. Virtue is manifested by worship toward God and grace orientation and morality toward man. Virtue is confidence toward God, courage toward man and circumstances. So Peter says applying all diligence or with your faith supply virtue -
Next with your virtue, (we have the main verb in view again) supply gnosis or knowledge or perception of doctrine. And so the second member of the chorus line which is “gnosis” is a challenge to continue with your “positive faith perception.” Notice the characters so far in your chorus line are “virtue and knowledge....”, not personality and sweetness. Virtue must take you to gnosis where your volition must be positive so that gnosis is converted to epignosis.
2PE 1:6, and in your knowledge, self‑control,
Self-control is the accusative singular feminine noun egkrates which is self-discipline, or self-control.
Self-control is based upon humility and is a manifestation of basic virtue in your life. Egkrates also means an “organized life.” If you have self-control, you are going to have an organized life. An organized life is based upon two concepts:
1. Having the right priorities which is “A time for everything,” ECC 3:1-8. A time for God, for doctrine, for family, for friends, for your job, etc.
- The second concept is that an organized life is based upon Bible doctrine which will give you the capacity to organize your life and have inner happiness and the right priorities. It is the organized person who is persistent and consistent in the perception of doctrine. Show me a person who is disorganized and I'll show you a person who will be a loser in life. Sooner or later you have to get organized. If you're always late, then obviously you're disorganized. - You'll never make it till you learn to organize your life. And under the doctrine of election, there is no excuse. You have 24 hours in a day just like everyone else.
The doctrine of election says....equal privilege, equal opportunity for all. You have the same opportunity as everyone else to advance to spiritual maturity and have your personal drama glorify God..., if you choose.
2PE 1:6, and in your knowledge, self‑control, and in your self‑control, [epichoregeo, the main verb is still in view here - supply] perseverance,
Perseverance is the accusative singular feminine noun hupomonen meaning patience, endurance, perseverance, or persistence. It actually connotes endurance. It means that in spite of opposition or distractions, you are someone who is not influenced by others. Hupomone also means courageous endurance in spite of all opposition. It includes active and energetic resistance to hostile forces. And therefore the fourth member of the chorus represents - “consistency.”
2PE 1:6, next... and in your perseverance, [supply or provide] godliness;
The fifth member of the chorus line is godliness which is the accusative singular feminine noun from eusebeia which is a technical term for living the spiritual life. It is a word that all of you need to be crystal clear on so that it will be very beneficial to your spiritual life. This Greek word eusebeia is mistranslated in the English language “godliness,” - really means living the spiritual life.
2PE 1:7, and in your godliness, or living the spiritual life, [epichoregeo again, supply or furnish] brotherly kindness,
Brotherly kindness is the sixth member of the chorus line which is the accusative singular feminine noun philadelphia meaning brotherly love. “Brotherly love” refers to love for the Royal family of God as manifested and taught in Gal 6:10 says, “So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all men, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith.” “Brotherly love” is not this phony type of love where everyone runs around calling each other brother this or sister that. And it's definitely not standing up and turning around to tell people you love them in church.
Much of the love that is found today in churches is phony, hypocritical and insulting to the character and nature of God. If people are coming to church to wait for someone to tell them that they love them, then they have no concept as to what church is all about. The church is not a lonely hearts club. We are here to learn doctrine. The church is not a “pick up joint” for lonely people who are frustrated with the club scene or who have tried “find-a-mate.com” and still have not succeeded.
Then finally in 2PE 1:7, the last member of the chorus line is mentioned, agape or impersonal love for all.
This is the lead actor or actress in your spiritual life or the drama behind your election. It is an objective, unbiased love that emphasizes the subject who is doing the loving rather than the object.
2PE 1:8, For if these qualities are yours
What qualities? The chorus line.
- Virtue (includes respect, loyalty, devotion).
2. Knowledge - perception of doctrine.
3. Self-control - organized life.
4. Perseverance - endurance or consistency.
5. Godliness - living the spiritual life.
6. Brotherly love - love for members of the Royal family.
7. Agape love - impersonal love for all members of the human race.
2PE 1:8-15, For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they render you neither useless nor unfruitful in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For he who lacks these qualities is blind or short‑sighted, having forgotten his purification from his former sins. Therefore, brethren, be all the more diligent to make certain about His calling and choosing you; for as long as you practice these things, you will never stumble; for in this way the entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will be abundantly supplied to you. Therefore, I shall always be ready to remind you of these things, even though you already know them, and have been established in the truth which is present with you. And I consider it right, as long as I am in this earthly dwelling, to stir you up by way of reminder, knowing that the laying aside of my earthly dwelling is imminent, as also our Lord Jesus Christ has made clear to me. And I will also be diligent that at any time after my departure you may be able to call these things to mind.