2 Peter 1:5-8
5For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; 6and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; 7and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. 8For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Original Word: εὐσέβεια
Phonetic Spelling: (yoo-seb'-i-ah)
Short Definition: godliness
Word Originfrom eusebés
NASB Word Usage godliness (14), piety (1).
From eusebes; piety; specially, the gospel scheme -- godliness, holiness.
GOD'LINESS, n. [from godly.] Piety; belief in God, and reverence for his character and laws.
1. A religious life; a careful observance of the laws of God and performance of religious duties, proceeding from love and reverence for the divine character and commands; christian obedience.
Godliness is profitable unto all things. 1 Tim. 4.
PI'ETY, n. [L. pietas, from pius, or its root, probably a contracted word.]
1. Piety in principle, is a compound of veneration or reverence of the Supreme Being and love of his character, or veneration accompanied with love; and piety in practice, is
the exercise of these affections in obedience to his will and devotion to his service.
HO'LINESS, n. [from holy.] The state of being holy; purity or integrity of moral character; freedom from sin; sanctity. Applied to the Supreme Being, holiness denotes perfect purity or integrity of moral character, one of his essential attributes.
1. Applied to human beings, holiness is purity of heart or dispositions; sanctified affections; piety; moral goodness, but not perfect.
My Notes : The original Greek word means godliness or piety. It is froma Greek word that means holiness. So, I decided to add the definition of all three words. I love that in the definition of godliness it looks a little like legalism by speaking on religion and following laws, but then adds that godliness is not those things alone, but those things must procede from love and reverance for our Lord. I think so many people miss that. So many people are bound by the "lists" as I call them. We often think okay if I do these things and don't do these other things then I'll be a good Christian, but we miss that it is truly about a relationship and if we are walking in relationship with Him, we will love Him more than we ever imagined possible and that love for Him will be what drives us to keep His commands, to listen to His convictions, to want to be more like Him. Piety follows suit. It says that piety is having a reverance for Him and loving His character, that it's the exercise of these affections. In otherwise it's the outward expression of an inward relationship. My favorite part of the definition of Holiness is the part that is in specific reference to people. Obviously holiness within the Lord is perfect. He is completely perfect, but as much as we desire to be like Him we are not. I believe holding ourselves to a standard of perfection is a form of bondage, it's the quickest way to fall into a lifestyle of legalism. He is perfect and He is perfecting us, but we will not be perfect until we get to Heaven. Sure we should strive to be like Him, but we must cut ourselves a little slack. We are going to make mistakes. One of the most freeing things for me to read was about Paul struggling to do what He knew was right and what He wanted to do. If Paul who was clearly a student of the Word of God, an instructor to the churches, the author of 13 books of the Bible, struggled, then why can't I allow myself to make mistakes? I'm not at all giving us an excuse to sin, but want to encourage you all that we can live a life of holiness, we can strive to be more like Him daily, but we are not perfect and we will make mistakes and when we do we must learn from them, get back up dust ourselves off and try again...
My challenge for you is to learn more about His character. It's pretty hard to emulate someone you don't know well. Read Psalms and learn more about God and who He is , go through the gospels and learn more about the character of Jesus. A perfect place to start is with love. He is love. There are many people in our lives that we love dearly, that are easy for us to love, but we also all have those people in our lives that are more difficult for us to love. Pray that He will help you to see those people through His eyes and ask Him to love them through you.
Just want to leave off with some applicable verses:
1 Peter 1:15-16
15But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; 16for it is written: "Be holy, because I am holy."[a]
2 Peter 1:3
His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.