For some time I've been studying the first chapter of 2 Peter. The pastor of the congregation I've been attending during our search for a home church started a series in 2 Peter, so I'm studying along.
In verse 3, Peter uses the word divine. I began to ponder what that meant. So often, I and other Christians read words and move by them so quickly their message has no chance to penetrate our souls. What is the significance of "divine"? Why is it there. It describes power, God's power. What makes divine power different from other kinds of power? Why say "divine"?
Anything described as divine comes from God. He is its source. He wields and controls it. He dispenses or withholds it. Divine signals a reader that the object of this short adjective lies beyond human ability, beyond human comprehension. It describes a nature of God.
Consider this. Every human being lacks the ability to comprehend the divine. It lies beyond us. it lies beyond the capacity of the human intellect to conceive, understand, or imagine. Neither our rationale, nor our creativity, can approach the stuff of divinity. "Divine" is a word woefully insufficient to contain the very reality it denotes. It exceeds its own definition.
"Divine" points beyond, beyond the tangible, beyond life, beyond the universe and three dimensional reality. It points beyond logic and science. Mathematics can't model it. Philosophy can't fathom it. "Divine" touches the realm of God, heaven, eternity, eternal life, the Trinity, infinite, forever. It encompasses the Kingdom of God, wisdom, authority, generosity. The one who is "divine" rules, creates, sustains, and exists beyond human thought.
Scripture reveals the fringes of God, not His full nature. The total extent of His glory, majesty, power, patience, love, and grace remain cloaked to us. God is and can "do exceedingly, abundantly beyond all that we can ask or think." He's not a super-human. He's divine.
In a stunning act, our divine God, sent Jesus. In Jesus Christ, the infinite and incomprehensible God took on and contained Himself within a human, finite form. He contained Himself so we could experience Him with us, so we could know Him. Jesus is the remarkably revealed tip of the massive iceberg that is God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
Divine is why I worship God. It appears, from Scripture, that I was created to interact with the divine, but sin destroyed that extraordinary capability. In the remaining rubble of my life, though unable to comprehend God, God grants me faith. Faith is the mental ability and activity that enables finite human beings like you and me to pursue and worship the infinite God.
Revelation is the infinite making Himself known to His finite creation. Faith is the ability if a finite person to acknowledge and embrace the infinite God. Worship, pursuit, and obedience to and of God requires my finite faith in the infinite God.
I've concluded that I read the word "divine" way too fast to grasp its meaning. My very existence is conceived, created, and sustained by infinite thought and power, by God. Everything complex to humanity is extraordinarily simple and easy to God.
So, I've begun to ponder how this idea of the "divine" impacts and influences things in my life like pride, fear, hurrying, worry, lust, greed, desire and want, selflessness, humility, etc. They seem different in light of this immense character of God called "divine."
Worship and obey Him today.
Crossing the Lines
The ideas behind this blog emerged from my study and preaching of a message I titled "A Single Step." It was an unexpected message out of Philippians 2:12-18. I'm the one who was surprised. I had a whole different idea of where the sermon would go. Then, I got into the text and followed it. That led, eventually, to the response by individuals after the message. God worked in me and in our congregation. He's still at work.
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