I’m the guy who skips to the end of a book to see how it ends, and when I skip to the end of Bible, I see the Church getting married to God’s son. Some would say that it isn’t really marriage, it’s just poetic language. After getting familiar with God’s purpose, I want to say that may it’s the other way around. Maybe marriage itself is the poetry. Maybe marriage itself is the metaphor. And yet, everything in this earthly poetry we live has a meaning. We read in Revelation that the splendid wedding dress the Church wears is made of the good works the saints have done — works God prepared for us to do ahead of time.
Yet some argue, I think without realizing it, that we don’t have any work to do, or that our work couldn’t be good. I don’t understand how someone defends that position. I’m not in the ‘saved by works’ camp, but God gives us tasks for us to do. I think we have a real problem when we begin to argue that faith is the end. I think that faith is the beginning, and we read that in 2 Peter 1.
“…make every effort to …”
Ok, so here we have an explicit command that there are in fact things we’re supposed to do, and we’re apparently, supposed to work on it really hard. What are those things?
“virture, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, love, and love”.
So, quick point, love isn’t listed twice. That’s just what it gets turned into in English. The Greek says “philadelphia”, and then “agape.” Brotherly love, and then ‘true love’. More on that, here.
Back to the point, not only are there things we should do, they even have an order, a sequence. I think it’s also interesting that the beginning of the sequence is faith, and we are saved by faith. And that the end of the sequence is “agape” (love), as in “The first command is this: Agape the Lord your God with all your heart and all your strength, mind, body”, etc…