Summary: This is the 5th sermon in the series "Are You Real?" Are you growing as a Christian?
Series: Are You Real? [#5]
ARE YOU GROWING?
On this Easter Sunday, I want to talk to you about your life after you are saved. Yes, I know that today is about the resurrection of Jesus Christ; but for a Christian every day is about resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is because Jesus, the Son of God, lived a perfect life on this earth and then became our sin on the cross, where He died. He was buried in a borrowed tomb and on the 3rd day He arose in physical body from the dead. If you believe in your heart and confess with your mouth that Jesus is the Son of God who died for you and arose on the 3rd day, then you are saved.
But, what happens after you’re saved? Does life get easier? Do you feel all tingly inside? See, this is where many people struggle because living the Christian life every day is extremely difficult. As a Christian, you should be maturing each day.
1 John 2:12-14 (NIV)
“I am writing to you, dear children, because your sins have been forgiven on account of his name. I am writing to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one. I write to you, dear children, because you know the Father. I write to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God lives in you, and you have overcome the evil one.”
Just as we go through different stages physically, we also go through these stages spiritually. I want us to take just a few minutes to look at these spiritual stages and for us to find out where we are spiritually.
1. Stage #1: Baby
The truth is that many people in here probably fall into this category; and there is nothing wrong with that. We all start as babies. A newborn baby can’t do much, but they immediately begin to recognize their parents. They can recognize their voices and their faces. A newborn Christian doesn’t know much about the Bible and what actually happened to them, but they do recognize God the Father.
Let’s notice some of the characteristics of a baby.
Needs love and security.
A baby needs to know that someone cares and is present to take care of them. That is why a baby when first put in their room and crib at night, wakes up screaming. They need your attention.
Is totally dependent on others.
A baby cannot do things on their own. They need someone to feed them, change then, bathe them, etc… They depend on others.
Is able to grow under normal conditions.
There are several things that a baby Christian needs if they are going to grow.
The correct environment.
They need to be in a place where they are taken care of. They can’t just be neglected and left to “fend for themselves”. It is necessary for someone to be there and taking care of the babies’ needs. We must do the same with new Christians.
To be able to breath.
If a baby can’t breathe properly, they will not grow. Breathing for the baby Christian is prayer. Through prayer, the Holy Spirit of God within us makes contact with the Father, Who is our spiritual air.
A growing baby must eat properly. The Bible is our spiritual food.
How do you recognize spiritual babies?
We recognize a spiritual baby by…
You show me a believer in a Church that is always self-centered, always interested in what everything is going to do for them; and I’ll show you a spiritual baby.
We recognize a spiritual baby by…
The messes that they make.
Babies make big messes. If you don’t believe that, pick one up after they have just eaten, hold them over your shoulder, and give them a good pat on the back; and see what happens after they burp. With my children, that always happened when I was in my suit ready for church.
2. Stage #2: Youth.
The characteristic of youth is strength. It is at this point in life that we begin to build strength. Youth are normally stronger at this point in their life and this is the same thing spiritually. Where does their strength come from? Their strength comes from the Word of God that lives within them. The Word of God has taken up residence within their lives. We recognize these spiritual youth by their joy in the Lord. The joy of the Lord is our strength. You can see a continual growth within them.