Jesus lived in pursuit of excellence. Note carefully that it’s moral excellence He sought – not worldly excellence. Worldly excellence is as close as well-produced television show, but it is likely to be providing content that is morally contaminated. Moral excellence is possible on any budget. Jesus achieved it with hardly any worldly wealth at all. His diligence, zeal, and discipline led Him to it. Should we not follow in His steps?
Here are some scriptures to help us ponder the excellence we have been inspired by Christ to pursue [emphasis added]:
Philippians 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.
1 Thessalonians 4:1 Finally then, brethren, we request and exhort you in the Lord Jesus, that as you received from us instruction as to how you ought to walk and please God (just as you actually do walk), that you excel still more.
The phrase “excel still more” occurs twice in the NASB: here and 1 Thessalonians 4:10.
1 Thessalonians 4:9 Now as to the love of the brethren, you have no need for anyone to write to you, for you yourselves are taught by God to love one another;
1 Thessalonians 4:10 for indeed you do practice it toward all the brethren who are in all Macedonia. But we urge you, brethren, to excel still more,
1 Thessalonians 4:11 and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life and attend to your own business and work with your hands, just as we commanded you,
2 Peter 1:2 Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord;
2 Peter 1:3 seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.
2 Peter 1:4 For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, so that by them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust.
2 Peter 1:5 Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge,
2 Peter 1:6 and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness,
2 Peter 1:7 and in your godliness, brotherly kindness, and in your brotherly kindness, love.
Other virtues of Christ, such as godliness and generosity, are listed in this post.
The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible, and to help others become more familiar with the Bible. For those unfamiliar with the Bible, see the blog A Nonchurchgoer’s Guide to Jesus and His Kingdom.
Scripture quotations taken from the NASB, unless otherwise noted.