2 Peter 1:5-9, “5For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; 6and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; 7and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. 8For 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. 9But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins.”
Ineffective: 1 – not producing an intended effect, 2 – not capable of performing efficiently or as expected
Unproductive: 1 – not productive, as in idle, 2 – (Economics) Adding nothing to exchangeable value.
Nearsighted: 1 – able to see near things more clearly than distant ones
Blind: 1 – unable or failing to see
I think a case can be made that American Christians are blind, or at the very least, nearsighted. How many Christians do you know that fit the description of good, knowledgeable, self-controlled, perserverers, godly, kind, and lovers? How many do you know fit only a portion of that description? Even worse is that there are people out there who have forgotten that they have been cleansed from their past sins.
I wonder if Christians are supposed to develop these traits as a result of the respect we have for our Holy God. Somewhere the salvation thing was presented as “Become a Christian and then you’re life will be alright.” If anything, becoming a Christian means ruining your life.
Like Paul, as a Pharisee, he was trained by the best to be the best. Then He me Jesus, was arrested, stoned, run out of town, flogged, etc. Most of the disciples of Jesus were martyred. For generations, being a Christian means risking social stature, possessions, and your very life. Believing in Jesus had always been more important. When the message changed, John the Baptists admonition to “show fruit in keeping with repentance…” fell by the wayside. That’s too bad too, after all, it is still in the Bible and it still applies to us, whether or not it’s still taught in church.