You Must Possess These Qualities in Increasing Measure
In 2 Peter 1:3-5, we were told to make every effort to add virtue (goodness), knowledge, self-control, steadfastness (perseverance), Godliness, brotherly affection, and love to our faith. Now Peter is saying that we must possess these qualities in increasing measure because they will keep us from being ineffective (useless) and unproductive (unfruitful). "Increasing measure" indicates growth, abundance, progress. Christians should be growing more and more in Christlikeness. It is possible to know the Bible and know about Christ and yet remain fruitless if it's just head knowledge without an intimate relationship with Christ. To be fruitful, we must abide in Him. "It is possible to have considerable knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ and yet to be unfruitful in that knowledge. Failure to practice what we know leads inevitably to barrenness. Inflow without outgo killed the Dead Sea, and it kills productivity in the spiritual realm as well." (MacDonald) Additional benefits for having these Christlike qualities in increasing measure include a blessed assurance, spiritual stability, and a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (2 Peter 1:10-11).
Those who do not have these qualities are spiritually nearsighted and blind. They forget that they have been cleansed from their past sins and they still live like the world. They forget that they're sinners saved by God's grace alone through faith in Christ alone. They lose sight of the significance of being a new creation in Christ and living a holy life that God calls them to. They don't have an eternal perspective. They still look at things from worldly perspective and only focus on temporary, earthly things. They are unable to see beyond the temporal to the eternal in everyday life situations. They are blind to God's truth. If we are truly grateful for our redemption and forgiveness of sins through our Lord Jesus Christ, we would be eager to thank Him, please Him, glorify Him, and obey Him. Obedience is not optional!
Keep growing deeper in your relationship with God and keep growing in Christlikeness. There should be no such thing as complacent Christians.
"More about Jesus would I know, More of His grace to others show; More of His saving fullness see, More of His love who died for me." (Eliza Hewitt)