“For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. 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.” (5:8)
It is our greatest goal, hope, and ambition to be more like Christ; bearing the fruits of His Spirit. The Christian walk is an ongoing journey. It’s a daily surrender, full of new mercies. I can easily get discouraged when I see the opposite of these fruits in myself, or when I’m annoyed by the same in others. Grace and humility for the process is key, and Peter is helping us out here.
I love the sequence of these, as they often depend and build on each other. Also notice the “for this reason”, which is the bestowing of a divine nature. This is, again, rooted in a New Identity.
Daily remember our whys and hows. Why do I want to be godly or virtuous? Because it is most fitting for my identity as a Child of God and Bride of Christ. How can I love unselfishly or remain steadfast? By His Power at work within me. The same power that raised Christ from the dead.
This isn’t religious ideas based on some ancient hearsay (16-18). There is legit heavenly power involved here, that’s why it matters. Let’s be mindful of His power and authority in our lives. Which of these actions and attributes do you want to see increased today?