“For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins.”
(2 Peter 1:9 ESV)
Christians are not perfect, and they will never be perfect this side of eternity. We will not be perfect until we meet the Lord face to face and we’re transformed into his image. We are in continual need of the grace and mercy of God.
However, when we’re brought to faith in the Lord, it does bring change to our life. No longer do we desire to live in sin. We understand our guilt and the punishment we deserve. We understand what Jesus did to save us from sin and its consequences. And, for this reason, we long to live for the Lord.
The qualities that Peter mentions in verses 5-8 become a part of our life, and grow as he continues his work. Virtue, knowledge, self-control, steadfastness, godliness, brotherly affection, and love increase in our life and are used by God to bless others. As we live in a state of daily repentance and faith, these virtues enable us to be effective and fruitful for the kingdom of God.
If this is not true of us, it indicates a serious problem. If we lack these qualities, Peter says, we are so nearsighted that we are blind. Even though we’ve heard the gospel and professed it, it’s become useless in our life. We’ve forgotten that we were cleansed from our former sins.
Instead of living in the grace of God, we revert back to our former life of sin. Instead of living in the freedom God has provided us, we allow ourselves to be enslaved all over again. We live not for the Lord, but for our sinful nature. And this is inconsistent with the salvation we’ve been granted.
The solution to this problem is not to try harder. It’s not to add these qualities to our life by our own efforts. They are the fruit of faith. They flow naturally from our faith.
The solution, then, is to remember what Christ has done for us. The solution is to, once again, look to him in faith. And, as we do so, he will be at work in our life.