Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall’, 2 Pet. 1. 10.
On three historic occasions in Peter’s life he used the word ‘never’. And on each occasion the Lord had to rebuke him because he had got it wrong.
In Matthew chapter 26 Peter boasted, ‘Though all men shall be offended because of thee, yet will I never be offended’, v. 33. Earlier, when many were turning away from following Christ, he had declared, ‘Thou hast the words of eternal life’, John 6. 68. Peter believed the Lord was right about everything – except at this one point. Peter just knew that he would never deny the Lord! The Lord’s rebuke was as tender as it was certain: ‘Verily I say unto thee, That this night, before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice’, v. 34. And of course it was true. Peter had to learn that spiritual conflicts are not won by stubborn hearts and rusty swords. The enemy will have to be resisted ‘stedfast in the faith’, 1 Pet. 5. 9.
Earlier that evening in the Upper Room, Peter had felt very awkward as He watched his Lord washing feet. When the Master moved the basin toward Peter, he had responded, ‘Thou shalt never wash my feet’, John 13. 8. Again we hear the Lord’s gracious corrective: ‘If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me’. The one-time bath of regeneration is key for a relationship in Christ; but the regular application of the word from the basin of sanctification is essential for fellowship with Christ.
After the ascension, Peter began proclaiming the gospel to the lost sheep of Israel. But one afternoon, from a housetop on the Mediterranean coast, he observed a divine object lesson – a tarpaulin holding animals of various kinds – and heard the Lord command him to eat. ‘But Peter said, Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten any thing that is common or unclean’, Acts 10. 14. Once more the Lord explained why Peter’s ‘never’ was wrong. As they spoke, Gentiles were at the door, eagerly seeking a messenger to bring the gospel to them.
This time, however, Peter had it right. ‘If ye do these things, ye shall never fall’, 2 Pet. 1. 10. The character traits of the kingdom, vv. 5-7, if added into our faith, will herald a triumphant entrance into it on that day.
Extracted from Day by Day Bible Promises published by Precious Seed Publications