You Can Now Walk on Water
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
Our dog likes to swim now, but early in his life, he was terrified of the water. During the summer, he didn’t like the dock and wouldn’t go near the shoreline. His first winter, I tried to get him to go on out on the ice but he refused. To get him out on the frozen lake, I had to pick him up and as soon as I carried him across the waterline, he frantically began doing the doggy paddle in midair. Once I put him down on the ice though, he realized he could walk on the lake. Now, he loves running on the ice, sliding around chasing snowballs. Previously, afraid of the water, he was limited by his experience and what he thought he knew. I had to show him that, in the winter, those limitations were removed. Transformed by this new knowledge and experience, he discovered a whole new world.
Though he didn’t use the illustration of dogs or a frozen lake, Peter taught a similar principle in today’s passage. Just prior to today’s verse, he proclaimed that, through Christ, God has given us everything we need to experience the divine nature, living in an intimate relationship with the father. He insisted that daily, we must seek virtue, knowledge, self-control, endurance, godliness, and love. With these qualities, we’ll live the life God desires. If we fail to pursue and experience these qualities though, Peter said we’ll live as if still blind, forgetting that we’ve been transformed by Christ and forgetting that we’ve been cleansed from the old life.
This unfortunately, is where a lot of us live. We could walk on the frozen lake, but we stand on the shore, paralyzed by the old life. We don’t realize the new life is waiting and we’re still living blind, incapacitated by our old limitations. Christ died so that we may be forgiven and restored to a relationship with the father. The prison door has been opened, but we remain in our cell. The fault here isn’t with God. He’s done his part. Now, we must do ours.
We often simply assume that coming to faith means that God automatically perfects us. Salvation is just the beginning though. Faith means that the new life is now available, but God allows us to remain in the old life if we prefer. Daily, if we desire the new life, we must do whatever it takes to abandon the old so that we may seek the new. We can now walk on water. Our job is to daily believe it and do it.