"But I Would Not Have You To Be Ignorant Brethren..."
This is a powerful admonition, and one not to be lightly passed over. Six times Paul used this statement...<'I would not have you to be ignorant Brethren.' And each time he was clarifying a widely held 'wrong thinking' among believers. These warnings are not directed at the unsaved and lost in the world, but to believers.
If there were ever a time in the history of mankind, when ignorance concerning spiritual realities was rampant, it is today.
The world is fully given over to the lusts of the flesh, the pride of life, the love of mammon; while the church is wallowing in apathy and compromise, calling darkness light and error truth. Blind leaders making bold claims, competing among themselves over a piece of the pie, while equally blind followers applaud their 'works' and willingly follow them into the ditches.
2 Peter 1:8-11 For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
What things is Peter referring to here?
2 Peter 1:3,4 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
Those who call themselves 'Christian' today, are well versed in the promises, at least the ones that hold great appeal to our flesh (carnal nature); such as health, wealth and prosperity. The teachings prevalent in Christian circles today are full of great promises of a better life... but according to what standards? How many of us are even seeking after godliness? or glory and virtue? or desire to partake of the divine nature?
Consider what Peter said in 2 Peter 1:2 May grace (God's favor) and peace (which is perfect well-being, all necessary good, all spiritual prosperity, and freedom from fears and agitating passions and moral conflicts) be multiplied to you in [the full, personal, precise, and correct] knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.[Amplified]
Are we seeking the things that Peter is describing here?
Are we seeking God for His favor, or to receive favor among men?
Are we seeking after spiritual prosperity?
Or material prosperity?
Do we even believe that we can obtain the full, personal, precise and correct knowledge of God?
Do we realize that the exceedingly great & precious promises given to us... are given so that we might be partakers with Him of His divine nature?
Did not our Lord plainly state that we "cannot love God and mammon" (the things of this world)? Have we considered ... What is 'Spiritual Prosperity,' and why is it more desirable than worldly, material wealth?
[Bear in mind when you read the Word of God... paying especially close attention to the red letters found throughout the Gospels. Ignore those who attempt to cast doubt on the inerrant validity of the Scriptures. God is more than able, regardless of how many human agents hands the scriptures have passed through down to this, the final generation, to keep His Holy Record's integrity intact. It is not as important the translation one reads, as it is important that one read with their spiritual understanding being enlightened and prompted by the Holy Spirit.]
Repeating verse 4, Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.Another way of saying precious promises: is 'costly assurances.'
To be a partaker is: to be a sharer, a companion, a partner in/of God's very nature.
Our modernistic, easy-believism approach to Christ's Gospel misses the mark entirely, and offers only false comfort if one can find comfort in lies. There is no such thing as a free-ride. [2Timothy 3:12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.]
Jesus said in John 17:21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.
To be one with Christ is the prize, the goal, the whole purpose of our Christian walk. We cannot be one with Christ, and still remain friends of the world. We cannot partake of the divine nature, and still cater to the corruption that is in the world through lust. If we are hoping to gain material wealth and prestige in this life, then we are deceiving ourselves and not following Christ.
What are some of the other things that Paul and the Apostle's wanted believers to know, (comprehend/ understand) and not be ignorant of ... And do we fully understand what they are saying to us and why? There is a lot to take in, as the following scriptures demonstrate.
Romans 1:13 Now I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you, (but was let hitherto,) that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles.
Romans 10:3 For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.
1 Corinthians 10:1-15 Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; and were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; And did all eat the same spiritual meat; And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ. But with many of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness. Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted. Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play. Neither let us commit fornication, as some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand. Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents. Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer. Now all these things happened unto them for examples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come. Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall. There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it. Wherefore, my dearly beloved, flee from idolatry. I speak as to wise men; judge ye what I say.
1 Corinthians 12:1 Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant. For we would not, brethren, have you ignorant of our trouble which came to us in Asia, that we were pressed out of measure, above strength, insomuch that we despaired even of life:
2 Corinthians 1:8 For we would not, brethren, have you ignorant of our trouble which came to us in Asia, that we were pressed out of measure, above strength, insomuch that we despaired even of life:
2 Corinthians 2:11 Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.
1 Thessalonians 4:13 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.
2 Peter 3:8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
A little something to chew on...
Ignorance is not going to be an excuse when we stand before the Judgment Seat of Christ...
May we seriously examine our own hearts...
and prepare for HIS coming.