ORNAMENTAL VIRTUES - PART 2
TUESDAY 09 MAY 2023
The Bible says in 2 Peter 1:3 (NKJV), that by His divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life, through His knowledge, having called us to glory and virtue. God, the very One who called us to Himself, did so, by means of His marvelous glory and virtue. This very truth demonstrates that ornamental virtues are from God because He called us to His glory and virtue. Therefore, possessing divine virtues is central to yielding and manifesting moral influence which bring elevation to our faith, and in turn, position us for oceanic amount of advantage.
Reference: 2 Peter 1:5 King James Version (KJV) "And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue..."
Beloved, we must make every effort to cultivate the virtues I listed in part one, which evince our divine nature and attest to the manifest presence of the Spirit in our lives. I equally mentioned in part one that giving all diligence implies making every effort to add them to our faith. This is quite similar to Pauline epistolary persuasion which says, "continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling." The NLT reads, "Work hard to show the results of your salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and fear" (Philippians 2:12).
Two things are involved while adding virtues to faith: The human effort and the divine working. It's like saying, "Work out your own salvation by adding virtues to faith, for it is God that works in you both to do and to will of those virtues." Therefore embed your conscious awareness in cooperating with the Spirit, so as to cultivate and express virtues such as humility, forgiveness, gratitude, sincerity, justice, moderation, cleanliness, tranquillity, chastity, decorum and more. Why the Holy Spirit? All of them are among the fruit of the Spirit listed in the book of Galatians 5:22-23. And it reads, "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control..."
I totally understand that this very Scripture in the book of Galatians did not specifically mention virtues such as forgiveness, gratitude, sincerity, justice, moderation, cleanliness, integrity etc, but they are all components of the fruit of the Spirit known as "goodness", denoting the quality of being morally good or virtuous. So they are all parts or elements of GOODNESS, which symbolizes a larger whole, and they successfully unfold and effectuate the supernatural life within us. That's the reason you find Biblical translations such as NIV, CEV, GNT, NRSV, render virtue as goodness in 2nd Peter 1:5.
Remember this: Jesus always encouraged strong faith. On one occasion, He responded to His own disciples saying, "Why are you afraid? You have so little faith!" (Matthew 8:26 NLT). Therefore, aim at a comprehensive development of all the fruit of the Spirit which represents ornamental virtues that help to fortify and strengthen your faith, because storms, trials, adversity and challenges are inevitable in our Christian journey or in earthly life, meaning that you don't need a little and weak faith since they are ineffective. Desire the effort to immerse yourself into cultivating and expressing those virtues in order to educe all kinds of goodness and forms of moral excellence, that will fuel your ability to stand firm in your faith walk and expression. Shalom!
Scripture Reading - Proverbs 10:9; Ephesians 4:2; Philippians 4:8; Hebrews 11:6.
Exuberant Declaration: The efficacy of my faith goes far beyond the ordinary because I have mastered the activation and expression of temperance, order, firm resolution, sincerity, justice, moderation, cleanliness, tranquillity, chastity, godliness, humility and more inspiring, life transforming virtues. There is no unwanted addition to my faith and thus, my conviction about the authority and dominance of the Word in my life remains sure. Blessed be God!