Good Morning Everyone,
Our theme for this month: “Being a virtuous person”
Our Bible verse for today: “But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue …” 2 Peter 1:5 (NKJV)
Our thought for today: “Strive to be a virtuous person.”
In 2 Peter 1:5 Peter tells us to add virtue to our faith. In other words, faith is a good starting point but it’s just the starting point. From there we need to grow and change, adding something called “virtue” to our basic faith.
The Amplified Bible doesn’t use the word virtue when translating this verse from the original Greek. Instead it uses the phrase “moral excellence” – we are to develop and add to our faith “moral excellence”.
A virtue is a quality or character trait that is morally good and which serves as a foundational principle and a guide for living. In the Greek world there were four primary cardinal virtues that were promoted – justice, courage, prudence (thoughtful deliberation), and temperance (self-restraint). The early Christian church adopted those four (which are all taught in the Bible), and added three from 1 Corinthians 13 (faith, hope, and love), forming the traditional seven cardinal virtues of the Christian faith – prudence, justice, temperance, courage, faith, hope, and love.
However the Bible gives us other lists of virtues as well, particularly the Fruit of the Spirit as described by Paul in Galatians 5:22-23 “The fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.”
If you are a virtuous person you are a person of moral excellence. You are firmly committed to doing what you know to be right. Your life is guided by deeply embedded virtues that have become so much a part of your character and personality, that moral excellence is simply a description of who you are as a person. Granted, we all still sin. But moral excellence is our goal, and it is what we strive for. It is our true north – the principle that directs and guides us through life, and to which we always return. That is the work of the Holy Spirit in the life of a mature Christian.
All this month we will explore the theme of being a virtuous person. We’ll consider many of the virtues listed in the Bible, and we will think about what those virtues look like being lived-out in everyday life. We’ll also consider the impact that moral excellence can have on the people around us. As a Christian we should be a walking, talking, mobile advertisement for Christ. Moral excellence helps us to do that. I look forward to learning and growing with you as we explore this theme of being a virtuous person.