As children we all had a deep desire to grow up, to be like those who were a few years older than us, to be stronger, more able and more knowledgeable. Growth was a natural process which was enhanced by the right food and exercise.
Our spiritual growth is similar. When we are newly born-again we are spiritual babes, and we need to grow-up spiritually. We need to receive the right spiritual food or else we cannot grow: “As new-born babes, desire the pure milk of the Word, that you may grow thereby” (1Peter 2:2) We should have a strong desire to grow spiritually, and be like those who are spiritually strong and mature. This in turn should cause us to have a strong desire to continually receive the Word of God which is able to give us the spiritual strength and growth we need.
Who wants to stay a baby, or a young child, or a spiritual teen? No, we all want to grow into the full maturity of adulthood. More than that we can become spiritual giants, for unlike natural growth which stops after a time, spiritual growth need never stop for there is no limit to how much we can grow spiritually!
“We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is fitting, because your faith GROWS EXCEEDINGLY, and the love of every one of you all ABOUNDS toward each other” (2Thessalonians 1:3).
How sad to see a malnourished baby or child whose growth is stunted. Yet that is the spiritual state of many Christians because they are not eating the right spiritual food or applying the principles of God to their lives that would cause them to grow.
We all want to grow up spiritually, but often we do not know how this happens and so we fail to co-operate with God in this and as a result we stay in spiritual babyhood or childhood.
This book is written to address that need and give you the necessary knowledge from God’s Word to understand how you can grow spiritually. Putting this knowledge into practice in your life will cause to to grow and become the mighty man or woman of God that God has made you to be, so that you can fulfil your calling, mission and destiny for this life, and so be prepared, matured and perfected, that you can contain the glory of God and rule and reign with Christ throughout eternity.
Remember God wants you to GROW UP, so He has provided all you need for your spiritual life and growth: “Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, 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” (2Peter 1:2,3). God’s grace is freely available to us to grow strong, but we can only tap into it and receive it through the knowledge of God in His Word.
So let us study God’s Word together to see the things that are needful for our growth so that we fulfil our potential and destiny.
God’s heart is revealed in 1Timothy 2:4: “God wills all men (1) to be saved
and (2) to come to the knowledge of the truth (the Word).”
God's two desires and priorities for every person is:
(1) that they would be BORN AGAIN and
(2) that they would GROW SPIRITUALLY.
This happens only by us coming to know and do God’s Word.
God’s will for you, once you have received Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour is that you grow spiritually from babyhood to adulthood. He does not want you to remain a spiritual babe, but to continually grow up to become strong in spirit, faith and love.
God’s will is that we: “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ” (Peter 3:18). Our growth in grace (love and faith) will happen as we grow in the knowledge of God through His Word.
God’s will is: “that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro, carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting but, speaking the truth in love, may GROW UP in all things into Him who is the Head, Christ” (Ephesians 4:14 15). We are to never stop growing until we reach the full maturity of our Head, Jesus Christ, being conformed to His image (Romans 8:29).
So Paul says: “Him (Christ) we preach (so that men might be saved), warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom (the Word), that we may present every man perfect (spiritually mature) in Christ Jesus” (Colossians 1:28).
Our spiritual growth (like our natural growth) is a process. It does not all happen at once, but as we continue in God’s Word. Jesus said: “If you abide (continue) in My Word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth (you know) shall make you free (grow up)” (John 8:31,32).
There are no shortcuts in our spiritual growth. Christians often chase after fads thinking they are quick fixes, but after spending their time on that they will discover they have just become more self-oriented and have not grown spiritually. They have just wasted their time.
True growth comes through knowing the Word of God, and Jesus guarantees to us that we will surely grow strong, if we diligently continue in His Word.
At the time of studying and applying His Word you may not be aware of growing, just as a child is unaware of his growth, but when you look back after a time of applying God’s principles you will be amazed at how much you have actually grown.
God’s vision and will for us is beautifully described for us in Jeremiah: “Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, and whose hope is the Lord. For he shall be like a TREE planted by the waters (of God’s Word and Spirit), which spreads out its roots by the river, and will not fear when heat comes; but its leaf will be green, and will not be anxious in the year of drought, nor will cease from yielding fruit” (Jeremiah 17:7-8).
God wants us to grow into a strong, healthy and fruitful Tree. Its growth comes through being planted by the waters of God’s grace (His Word and Spirit), so that it continually taps into that grace, drawing into itself all the life and nourishment it needs to grow and stand strong and bear fruit at all times.
Psalm 1 gives the same picture and explains further how we can grow and become like this lovely, mighty Tree: “Blessed is the man ...whose delight is in the Law (Word) of the LORD, and in His Law (Word) he meditates day and night.
He shall be like a TREE planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither and whatever he does shall prosper” (Psalm 1:1-3).
As we plant ourselves by the means (channels) of God’s grace, we draw into ourselves all the grace we need to grow and prosper. Primarily, we are to plant ourselves by the waters of His Word, meditating on it continually. As we do, we draw into ourselves all the life and goodness we need for our growth, for it is all in His Word.