Summary: Part two of Worship Series on spiritual growth.
“In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! 13 Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant,
is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness.” Hebrews 5:12-13
Intro: In case you missed last Sunday or you are new to First Church we are in the second week
of a Worship Series titled “Green.”
Last week we talked about how the Christian year has four basic colors: red, white, purple and green.
These colors represent the different times in the life of Christ and the church
or the different seasons in Christian year.
Green is the color for six weeks after Epiphany and will be the color again after Pentecost.
“Green” is color of growth
Green is the time for growth in the church.
Green is the time for growth in your own individual spiritual life.
Is it possible to measure spiritual growth?
If I could summarize the book of Hebrews in one sentence it would be.
“Let us grow spiritually.”
Yes, spiritual growth can be measured.
That is what our text is talking about today.
The writer of Hebrews is able to measure the spiritual growth of the hearers.
He says the audience has been believers long enough that they ought to be teachers by now.
But instead of making progress they were still spiritually immature
and had to be re-taught the elementary truths about God’s word all over again.
What if there was some type of scale that we could use on Sunday mornings
we would line people up
and instead of weighing the body weight we could weigh their spiritual weight.
Sometimes I wish it were that simple.
Because there are times in my own life
when I am in the middle of a struggle
and I am thinking that my spiritual life is in the dumps.
But in reality my spiritual life is growing by leaps and bounds.
I just have a difficult time seeing it in the middle of a messy life.
And then there will also be times in life when the temptation is to become content with your spiritual life
When in reality your spiritual growth has plateaued and reached a state of little or no change.
I am convinced that this is one of the most dangerous times in the life of a Christian.
And that it is likely true of about one out of five attending church members at any given time.
Many churches today are in uncharted territory.
They have side by side in the same church lifelong members and totally new seekers.
I will preach this same sermon to both the 8:30 crowd and the 10:45 crowd.
In these two services there are some very mature believers and there are some brand new believers.
Has your spiritual life stalled completely?
Have you thought about leaving this church and going somewhere else?
Right beside you on the same pew are members who are fired up.
Right beside you are people who are passionate about their faith.
They are ready to grow deeper in their relationship with Christ.
They want to be challenged.
They are ready to grow to the next level.
So no matter whether you are spiritually healthy and vibrant
Or your spiritual life has stalled or weakening
There are some easy steps that you can take to move in the right direction of spiritual growth.
I. Don’t be stuck in the past, let it go, leave it all on the altar.
One of the best trips you will ever make in your life is a trip to the altar.
Just ask anyone who has ever been there before.
Jesus said, “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you,
and learn from me,
for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” Matthew 11:28-29
A yoke was a heavy wooden harness that fits over the shoulders of a ox.
It is attached to a plough or a wagon or other piece of equipment for the ox to pull.
You may be pulling a heaving load.
Sin is never easy to carry.
Sin may make you feel light for a short time. It may make you feel high for a moment.
But sin is only fun for a season.
Then you begin to pay the price for the sin.
The cost of sin can be a lot.
The cost of sin is the hurt and pain people suffer because of their choices.
One of the biggest obstacles of spiritual growth is carrying around all the baggage of the past.
I meet people all the time who cannot let go of something that happened to them a year ago.