Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

The Qualities of a Christian
2 Peter.1:1-11

“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.”(V.5-7)

We define a great teacher, a great athlete, or a great leader by the qualities they exhibit in their role. We should all strive to exhibit the qualities of whatever role we decide to take upon during our lives. In 2nd Peter 1:5-7 we see how Peter very clearly lists the qualities that a Christian should exhibit and the order one should use to build these qualities upon. As Christians, we should truly analyze ourselves and see if we are exhibiting these qualities. If we are lacking in any of these traits, we should use this great instruction to help guide us to grow as Christian and to eventually exhibit all the qualities a Christian should possess.

Faith - This should be our foundation on which we build our lives upon. Faith should not only be the basis for our belief in God, but basis for our behavior. In Hebrews 11 we see how Noah, Abraham, Moses, and others showed faith in God and obeyed and trusted in him even if they could not see the plans God had for them at that moment. Do we have faith to submit to God’s will and trust him unconditionally to guide our lives?

Goodness - In many translations, this word is replaced by virtue, which means behavior showing high moral standards. Paul states in Philippians 4:8 to first think, and then put into practice whatever is true, noble, right, pure, admirable, and praiseworthy. As Christians, are we exhibiting behaviors that righteous and living a moral and virtuous lifestyle?

Knowledge - We should not only have knowledge of God, but KNOW God. Are we taking time each day to study the scriptures and spend time with God in prayer? In Colossians 1:9-10, Paul says we should continually ask God to fill us “with the knowledge of His will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way; bearing good fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God.”

Self-Control - As Christians, we should have self-control and hold oneself back from indulging in the pleasures of the world or living a life following the desires of our flesh and minds (Eph.2:3). In addition, we should practice self-control when controlling our anger and not seek vengeance to those who may have wronged us, just like how Esau and Joseph forgave and did not seek retribution.

Perseverance - We must have a frame of mind that causes us to go on regardless of the trials, difficulties, or tribulations we face in our lives. We will all face tough times and feel the urge to give up, but we must rely on God and persevere. As Christ suffered and endured the cross and persevered, as Christians we must also persevere.

Godliness - To be Godly is to live a life totally devoted to God, and thus live a life according to his will in everything. We are meant to live holy and godly lives (2nd Peter 3:11). Are our actions, words, and thoughts reflective of a life devoted to Christ?

Brotherly Kindness -This is a type of love we should show towards fellow believers of the faith. Peter instructs in 1st Peter 1:22 to have sincere love for your brothers and to love another deeply from the heart. In our churches, we pray together, sing praises together, and eat together…but we must also beyond this and love each other.

Love- Jesus instructs us not only love those who love us, but to love everyone including our enemies (Matthew 5:43-48). Paul says you can give everything to the poor and surrender your body to the flames, but if you are not motivated by love, you have gained nothing (1 Corinthians 13). As Christians, we need to have genuine love for everyone just like our Lord.

We all may be in different stages in our walk as a Christian, but we must strive to one day exhibit all these qualities that define a Christian. To truly attain these qualities may seem unattainable, but we must remember that with God all things are possible.

Prayer: “Oh Lord, we pray that you help us in our walk as a Christian, and help us reflect the qualities that truly represent who you are. Amen. ”

Thought of the Day: “Are we showing the world what Christians truly should be?”

Aby Tharakan, St.Andrews MTC NY

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