SNT 1261 Partakers of Divine Nature
Christian believers should recognize that we share fully of divine nature. We are a new creation of God, joint-heirs with Christ who has redeemed us and given us eternal life.
Dr. Wierwille gives an understanding of the scripture regarding “partakers of the divine nature” beginning with an explanation of the five senses man which we are from birth. He then contrasts this to the spiritual world which is unseen but can only be known spiritually with the new birth. With the new birth, we then share fully of divine nature with superior excellence, which is God in Christ in us, the hope of glory. The difference between “eternal” and “everlasting” life is defined. As sons and daughters of God, we are new men and women with the potential to manifest a new kind of love, the love of God [agapeo]. This love seen in our lives can draw others to God. The mind of the believer must be renewed to come into harmony and fellowship with God’s divine nature in us. As partakers of divine nature, we are living in God’s plan for his creation.
Publication Date: 01-13-1985
Victor Paul Wierwille was a Bible scholar and teacher for over four decades.
By means of Dr. Wierwille's dynamic teaching of the accuracy and integrity of God's Word, foundational class and advanced class graduates of Power for Abundant Living have learned that the one great requirement for every student of the Bible is to rightly divide the Word of Truth. Thus, his presentation of the Word of God was designed for students who desire the in-depth-accuracy of God’s Word.
In his many years of research, Dr. Wierwille studied with such men as Karl Barth, E. Stanley Jones, Glenn Clark, Bishop K.C. Pillai, and George M. Lamsa. His formal training included Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Theology degrees from Mission House (Lakeland) College and Seminary. He studied at the University of Chicago and at Princeton Theological Seminary from which he received a Master of Theology degree in Practical Theology. Later he completed his work for the Doctor of Theology degree.
Dr. Wierwille taught the first class on Power for Abundant Living in 1953.
Books by Dr. Wierwille include: Are the Dead Alive Now? published in 1971; Receiving the Holy Spirit Today published in 1972; five volumes of Studies in Abundant Living— The Bible Tells Me So (1971), The New, Dynamic Church (1971), The Word's Way (1971), God's Magnified Word (1977), Order My Steps in Thy Word (1985); Jesus Christ Is Not God (1975); Jesus Christ Our Passover (1980); and Jesus Christ Our Promised Seed (1982).
Dr. Wierwille researched God's Word, taught, wrote, and traveled worldwide, holding forth the accuracy of God's "wonderful, matchless" Word.
2Co 4:18; 1Co 2:14; 2Pe 1:4, 3; Col 1:27; 1Jo 3:1, 2; Jam 2:23; Gal 4:1, 2
Gal 4:3-7; Col 1:11-15; Rom 6:11-14; 8:16, 17; Joh 5:24;
1Co 7:14; 2Co 5:17; Phi 2:13; Rom 8:28-32; (Rom 10:9)
Partakers of Divine Nature
Victor Paul Wierwille
– Sunday Night Teaching Transcript –
Thank you all. And thank you, Dorothy. Thank you, Rhoda. You may be seated, please.
Take your Bibles and go to 2 Corinthians. I would very much like for you to understand and appreciate – and this applies not only to you but all of our people around the nations of the world – the greatness of the subject that I want to share with you tonight.
It’s entitled: Partakers of Divine Nature.
Just because you can’t feel something or you can’t explain it, does not mean something cannot be real, genuine, or experienced. My being seated at this desk and you seated out there, can you feel the air around you? No. But it must be real and genuine for we are still experiencing life and we’re still breathing. How about light? Can’t feel it and yet we’re here in this room; we can see, we can make our notes, like some of you are doing, and look at your Bibles.
You know we have, from birth, been so conditioned by our five senses that we have erroneously come to believe that only what we can see, hear, smell, taste or touch is real; when in truth it is not.
2 Corinthians chapter 4, verse 18:
2 Corinthians 4:18: While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.
The man of the five senses – the natural man – no matter how intelligent, has never produced a civilization that it did not ruin; nor has it developed an educational system of philosophy and metaphysics that did not corrupt and destroy.
And the reason for that is given in 1 Corinthians chapter 2, verse 14:
1 Corinthians 2:14: [For] the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them,…
The natural man – the man of body and soul – who gets all of his information via the five senses; seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting or touching; he just cannot know God. He can’t know. He can’t receive things of the Spirit, of God.
As a matter of fact, all of those things are…
1 Corinthians 2:14: … foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
Things in the natural realm can be known by the five senses, but things that are of the spirit must be known spiritually.
Our day and time, our civilization in which you and I are living, has failed because of Churchianity and religious Christianity. Metaphysical and philosophical religions do not have, and they cannot offer, eternal life. They, from generation to generation, revamp the wrappings only.
So the man of the five senses is left with his unworthiness, a sense of sin, and an inferiority complex. And that’s why natural man has jealousies, bitterness and hatred.
But man was never made to be this way. God wanted winners: He wanted spiritual athletes. He wanted His own family; His own children. And because of God’s great love from even before the foundations of the world, God conceived a second birth; which in the Word of God is called the New Birth in 2 Peter chapter 1.
2 Peter chapter 1, verse 4:
2 Peter 1:4: Whereby [or by which] are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: [in order] that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
And the word “corruption” means where you were getting worse and worse and worse. By these great and precious promises; in order that by these – the great and precious promises of God – ye might be partakers – share fully of the divine nature – having escaped the corruption of that – of getting worse and worse and worse.
Because in verse 3, preceding this great verse 4, it says:
2 Peter 1:3: …through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue
And the word virtue means superior excellence. God has called us to glory and superior excellence. So by His own glory and superior excellence we are given – there is given to us the exceeding great and what? precious promises. That great truth almost leaves me breathless, class. Who of us has really believed this to the end of magnifying it in our daily living? We can’t feel the new birth so it makes such little difference in most people’s lives.
And yet in the new birth we have Colossians 1:27
Colossians 1:27: To whom God [desired to] would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:
He has called us to glory and superior excellence. And then this verse talks about that glory again; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. What a tremendous truth. We were natural men, but now we are sons of God.
1 John, the epistle, chapter 3, verse 1:
1 John 3:1: Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.
1 John 3:1: Beloved, now are we the sons of God, [right now we are sons of God but]…it doth not yet appear what we shall be…
Right now we are sons of God. We are not friends of God as Abraham was. That is would have been wonderful; if you’ll think of what Abraham accomplished and how God worked with him, and Abraham was just a friend of God. It says so in the book of James.
Chapter 2 of James, verse 23.
James 2:23: And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.
We are not friends of God as Abraham was; we are what? Sons of God. And the reason this has been so hard for people to believe and to admit to is because of our sense-knowledge upbringing. Because we only believed in what we could see, hear, smell, taste or touch. And as I said at the opening, just because you can’t feel something or explain it does not mean something is not real or genuine; or that it can’t be experienced.
Galatians, please. We are not only not friends of God, we’re sons of God; and we are not servants of God either.
Galatians chapter 4, verse 1:
Galatians 4:1-2: Now I say, That the heir, as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he be lord of all.
But is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father.
Galatians 4:3-5: Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the [tutors or ordinances] elements of the world: [the elementary things]
But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law.
To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive [sonship]…
Not adoption. We’re not adopted; we are born again. And to be born again means you have the seed of God in Christ in you. You are partakers of God’s divine nature through Jesus Christ.
Galatians 4:6-7: And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, [Father, Father] Abba, Father. [Father, Father]
Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.
We are sons of God in a perpendicular relationship class. We are servants to our fellow men; I understand that. But, you know, I hear people pray or talk about being servants of God. We are not; we are sons of God. If you say that you’re a servant of God thinking this way, that’s contrary to God’s Word. And anything contrary to God’s Word has to be sin, I guess. I don’t know, but it isn’t too great.
Now, I know it’s a shocker when you talk to people about, even at best we’re not friends of God, we are not servants of God. Because all they’ve ever thought about, well if they could even be a friend of God they’d be tickled to death. Or if they could just a little bit serve God, you know, they’d be grateful. We have never magnified in our hearts and lives that we are partakers of God’s divine nature. And that we have His glory and His superior excellence within us. As natural men, we were fully failure conscious; condemnation conscious. Now we must become God and son conscious, class. You have to get a new sense of God. You have to get a new vision in your mind.
Look at Colossians chapter 1. Strengthened… Verse 11:
Colossians 1:11-12: Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;
Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath [or who has] made us meet [is the word “adequate” - He has made us adequate] to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:
Partakers is to enjoy our share. He has made us adequate to enjoy our share of the inheritance of the saints in the light, because we are partakers of His divine nature.
Colossians 1:13: Who hath [past tense] delivered us [past tense] from the power of darkness, and hath translated [and the word “translated” is has given us citizenship]…[in his kingdom by the work] of his dear Son:
God has delivered us of the power of darkness – that’s the adversary or the negative – and He has given us citizenship. And if you’re a citizen like here in the United States, you are a citizen, you have certain citizenship rights. God – because we are born again and partakers of the divine nature of God in Christ in you, the hope of glory – He’s given us citizenship in His kingdom (in God’s kingdom) through or by way of the work of His dear Son.
Colossians 1:14: In whom we have redemption through his blood [“through his blood” is omitted], even the forgiveness of sins:
Not forgiveness, it’s the word “remission”. Remission is for the unsaved sinner; forgiveness is for the saved one. So, in God, in Christ we have our redemption. And to have redemption you have remission of sins.
Colossians 1:14: Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of [“all creation” is the text] every creature:
Look at Romans. Isn’t this terrific? Roman 6. Bless your hearts. We have to just become God conscious and Son conscious. We have to get a new vision; a new sense of God in Christ in us in evidence. Romans 6:11.
Romans 6:11-14. Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed [to] unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.
[in the five senses thereof]
Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God.
For sin shall not have dominion over you:…
Another translation that I like very much reads:
For sin shall no longer lord it over you [it’s not going to be your lord].
…for you are not under law but under grace.
Look at Romans 8, verse 16.
Romans 8:16-17: The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: [children of God]
And if [we are] children, then [we are what?] heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ;…
We are children of God because of His divine nature; partakers of His divine nature in us. With Christ in us, the hope of glory. And if we’re children of God then we are heirs of God; and we are joint heirs with Christ. Not with Jesus in his humiliation, but in the Christ; the messianic promise and the one who has been raised from the dead, seated at God’s right hand.
In the Gospel of John chapter 5, verse 24.
John 5:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, [on God who sent Jesus Christ] hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.
To pass from death to life is to be rescued. It’s taken out of the Kingdom of Satan, class, and put into the Kingdom of God by the works of His son, as we read in Colossians 1:13.
I think tonight again I ought to explain to you the difference between the usage of the words “everlasting life” and “eternal life” in the scriptures. It’s eternal life from God’s point of view. It’s everlasting life from your experiential point of view. Let’s say you were 20 or 18 when you were born again. Did you have eternal life before that? No. But once you got born again, from that moment on it is everlasting. If you’d have had it from the beginning you could have said, “Well, it was eternal from before I was born,” and all that stuff. But the… everlasting means it had a starting point. Eighteen, 20, 30 years old; whenever you got born again; from that time on it is everlasting. But from God’s point of view, that everlasting life that you have is eternal.
You just got to think tonight a little bit about what it means to you to have His divine nature in you. Well, it means sonship; it means you’re an heir of God; you’re a joint heir with Christ. It means you have eternal life. It’s everlasting but it’s eternal because you got born again, and from that day on it’s everlasting – but it’s eternal life from God’s point of view. And we have never majored the greatness of that eternal life because we get talked out of it by our feelings or by our environment; or what we see, hear, smell, taste or touch. But, people, we are what the Word of God says we are. We have what the Word of God says we have; it does not depend upon your feeling or mine. Because we had nothing to do with the sacrifice of God’s only begotten son. God so loved that He gave. You and I didn’t so love that we gave, God gave.
Now I know this a revolting situation in the world. Well, I don’t care about the world. They never will understand anyway. But, we can understand and we can experience because it’s the truth of God’s Word.
This eternal life, this sonship, is so fantastic that in a marriage situation if the husband is a believer and the wife isn’t, his eternal life just sort of sets her aside. Vice versa. If she’s a believer and he isn’t, her eternal life, Christ in her, sets him aside.
It says so in 1 Corinthians 7.
Listen to verse 14.
1 Corinthians 7:14: For the unbelieving husband is sanctified [set apart] by the wife [the believing wife], and the unbelieving wife is [set aside] sanctified by the [believing] husband: else were your children unclean; but now are they holy.
Now, isn’t that tremendous? That’s part of the greatness of this partakers of divine nature. Sonship; eternal life; joint heirs. That the children are holy that are born where there’s one member that’s a born again believer.
You see, this eternal life, this being partakers of divine nature, gives us the potential to change habit patterns. It gives us the potential to form new habit patterns. The potential to change our conduct and our living. It gives us the potential to manifest a new kind of love, which is the agapao; the love of God in the renewed mind. For we are living in God’s class as His children; for we are a new creation.
2 Corinthians 5:17: Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature [“creation” is the text]: old things [the old man nature] are passed away; behold, all things [in Christ] are become new.
That’s why we can manifest a new kind of love. It’s not phileo. Phileo love is selfish love. It is agapao. It’s the love of God. Because we are partakers of His divine nature. That’s why you and I can love the unlovable. Even as God in Christ loved us when we were dead in trespassers and sin without God and without hope. And it’s the love of God that draws people to repentance. I think it says that in the Word. It’s the love that draws. And there is no other way they can see the love of God except in your life and mine. And that’s why God made it possible for us to be partakers of His divine nature, so we could manifest a new type of love.
According to Philippians 2:13; being a partaker of the divine nature,
Philippians 2:13: For it is God [who is at work within us] which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.
Why do we keep forgetting this? Because of our old man training; that we only believe what we can see, hear, smell, taste or touch. The Word says God is at work within us.
So, tomorrow morning at the shop or factory, farm, business – wherever you are tomorrow morning – who’s going to be at work within you to will and to do his what? good pleasure.
Right. So you have the potential to change your habit patterns. You have the potential to change your believing, change your conduct and living. And you have the potential to manifest this new kind of love.
The mind of the believer, class, must be renewed to come into harmony and fellowship with God’s divine nature in us. This experience, plus concentration and commitment, are the ingredients to spiritual success. And then competence leads to confidence.
The Word of God, class, gives to every believer a deep sense of affection, love, pride, self esteem and responsibility; the reason for your living and doing something satisfying and worthwhile.
In Romans chapter 8, verse 28.
Romans 8:28: And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God,…
Not all things work together for good, but all things work together for good to those who do what? love God.
I've seen a card that just had the first part of the verse on it. That’s a lie. All things do not work together for good. But all things work together for good to those who love God. To them or those who are called according to His what? Purpose.
Romans 8:29-30: For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn [Jesus Christ might be the firstborn , his Son] among many brethren.
Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and [those] whom he called, [must have called you because you heard or you responded by confessing with your mouth the Lord Jesus; believe God raised him from the dead; you got born again.] them he also justified: [so are you justified because you’re partakers of his divine nature. You’re justified] and whom he justified, them he also glorified.
So in God’s sight, as partakers of divine nature, you are righteous, you are justified, and you’re already glorified.
Just think of what a wonderful week this can be for us as believers; knowing these great truths of God’s Word, and going by the Word rather than our past experiences. Knowing that we’re partakers of His divine nature.
That’s why verse 31 is so tremendous.
Romans 8:31: What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us…
And let me ask you, is God for us? Yes. We are his what? Sons. We’re not servants, we’re not friends of His, we’re sons of God. We’ve been made righteous; we’ve been redeemed; we’ve been justified; we have been glorified.
Romans 8:31-32: If God be for us, [and He certainly is] who can be against us?
He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?
And that’s why, class, one of the greatest truths in God’s Word that we as believers need to recognize and build in our hearts and lives is that we are partakers of God’s divine nature. And thereby we have His great, glorious, and precious promise.
Thank you, Father for the wonderful night and the greatness of your love and your Word, through Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen.