“As His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue.”
“Glory” in this context means heaven. Christians are headed for glory. He called us “to glory” (literally). God will glorify us in eternity because we believed in Christ in time.
2 Co 4: 17 “For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, 18while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”
2 Ti 2: 10 “Therefore I endure all things for the sake of the elect, that they also may obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory.”
1 Pe 5: 10 “But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. 11To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.”
The Lord Jesus calls us by means of His unique glory and virtue. The word “own” does not occur in this translation but we find it in the Greek text. The word “own” carries the idea of private, unique or peculiar possession. God called us to His “own unique glory.”
Glory refers to the ultimate triumph of the plan of God. You may be a loser but you will ultimately triumph in the plan of God. Some of you are losers because you accept defeat. The loser gives up. Losers usually are ignorant of God’s provisions.
Glory is a term of dignity and refers to God’s essence but here it means more. Glory is the fact that God designed a perfect plan for us. God designed a plan where He and we cannot lose.
“Virtue” occurs five times in the New Testament. God calls us to virtue. “Virtue” is excellence, praises (1 Pe 2:9). This word has lost some of its meaning to us today. “Virtue” means excellence in workmanship. The work of Christ is a work of excellence. God calls us by His own merit and workmanship. Virtue is a quality of excellence that belongs to God.
We will ultimately triumph in God’s plan for us.
Glory is the fact that God designed a perfect plan for us. God designed a plan where He cannot lose. You say, “He included me in His plan, doesn’t that make Him a loser?” No, God cannot lose because He made provision for any contingency we might face. Stand by for a shock – God’s plan is greater than you are! Even at your best, you are at your worst in God’s eyes. God is greater than your sin.
God’s glory is His perfect character plus the plan that comes from it. It is impossible for a perfect God to come up with an imperfect plan. The plan would indeed be imperfect if it depended on man and what man does. There is no place in God’s plan for the energy of the flesh.
Grace depends on who God is and what God has done, never on who we are and what we do. That is why we must function under God’s power and God’s provision. God’s glory takes His perfect plan and relates it to us. God’s will reveal ultimate glory in eternity. That is where He makes the plan experientially perfect in us. He made it judicially perfect when He sacrificed Christ on the cross.
God calls us to His Excellency. He is building excellent character in us. He called us with a definite purpose in mind. God is in the business of reproducing His Son in me (2 Ti 1:9). I do not think any of us have been mistaken for the Lord Jesus lately. One of these days we will be like Him. In the meantime, we are supposed to become more and more like Him.