A Dispensational Approach
By R. B. Shiflet
I. Introduction 1:1
II. INVOCATION 1:2-3
III. IDEAL SPIRITUAL LIVING 1:5-7
IV. INCREASING KNOWLEDGE 1:8
A. The Condition
“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.” (2 Pet. 1:8)
“These things” refers back to the graces listed in the earlier verses of this chapter. Peter writes, “if these things be in you and abound …”
The Word “abound” means “to multiply, to overflow, to increase, to be overabundant.” The verb is in the present tense, which implies a continuing overflow, a lifestyle of abounding in these things.
B. The Consequences
1. You will Not Be Barren
The word means “sterile, idle, slow, not doing the work that one is supposed to do.”
2. You Will Not Be Unfruitful
This simple word just means “without fruit; not bearing what one is expected to bear.” The believer who is in fellowship with the Lord, has the Word of God in his heart, and is controlled by the Holy Spirit will produce the fruit of the Spirit. The evidence of being filled with the Spirit is not an emotional experience, or the ability to speak in tongues or perform miracles, it is love, joy, peace, etc. And the consequence of this is that we will be fruitful in knowledge.
The word “knowledge” used here is the usual Greek word for knowledge with the prefix “epi,” which denotes full knowledge, precise accurate knowledge. It occurs twenty times in our New Testament and is used fifteen times by the Apostle Paul. It seems to be particularly used in connection with the special revelation given to Paul (see Ephesians 1:17; Colossians 1:10, 12, 2:2.) Dr. E. W. Bullinger published a work more than 100 years ago entitled “The Knowledge of God.” He offers proof after proof that the Christian’s greatest need is knowledge of God. That is very obviously true today. More people are interested in the latest hit movie than in studying the Word of God. We need more Christians praying, more Christians who are regular in church attendance, and are more dependable. But without a knowledge of God and His Word, we have no motivation and no ability to share the Word. God give us grace to be found faithful.
(To Be Continued)