Summary: Looks at the difference between between being immature spiritually and spiritually mature and how to grow.
January 14, 2018
“So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.
Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.”
“When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.”
There is nothing cuter than a baby. What a miracle! What a gift from God. When I hold a newborn baby in my arms and see the tiny toes and fingers, when I see the perfectly shaped ears and nose; when I gaze at the intelligence in their eyes – I praise God! What a wonderful, brilliant, powerful God He is!
One thing we all have in common, rich or poor; smart or not as smart; educated or not – we all came into this world as a baby. We came into this world with fist clenched and yelling our displeasure – at least I did. Imagine that! We have zero knowledge other than what God hardwired us with. We are zero experience. And every moment of every day we begin to acquire knowledge and experience. We learn when we cry we can get something to eat; we can get our diaper changed or we can a adult to come to us. We learn pretty fast.
As we grow we learn to walk and talk and communicate our will. Sometimes our will clashes with mom or dad’s will and they communicate their dissatisfaction through some form of discipline. Sometimes it is pleasant and sometimes it isn’t. But we learn. We grow. Our goal is adulthood and maturity.
God has described the church as a family. We are children of God. We are children of the Light. Jesus said,
“Believe in the light while you have the light, so that you may become children of light.” John 12:6
“See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!” 1 John 3:1
“For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light!” Ephesians 5:8
“You are all children of the light and children of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness.” 1 Thessalonians 5:5
Do you see that we are a family? That is why they used to call each other ‘brother’ or ‘sister’ back in the early days of the church. The Bible says God is our Heavenly Father and Jesus is our brother. What an awesome concept!
Just as in the physical world an individual is expected to grow – so it is in the spiritual realm, too. It is called maturing. In the physical realm we often don’t act our age. Babies want things they are not ready for. Adolescence and teens tend to think they are more grown up than they are. Adults tend to think they are younger than they are. So what are we to do? Babies are weighed and poked and prodded and measured to see where they are physically and mentally. You kids know all about test. IQ, SAT, CAT, and pop quizzes. College kids just love those finials to see what they learned. Adults get drivers test, eye test, yearly physicals and so on. Life seems to be a series of tests of one kind or another.
The Bible says,
“Do not treat prophecies with contempt but test them all; hold on to what is good, reject every kind of evil.” 1 Thessalonians 5:20-22
“Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.”
“Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.” Psalm 19:23
“If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work.” 1 Corinthians 3:12-13