Sunday, June 22, 2014
Colossians 1:3-4 "We give thanks to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you, 4 since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and the love which you have for all the saints."
Introduction & Illustration:
I can recall growing up as a boy and receiving in my first grade year a little pine tree to plant in our yard. I asked my parents if we could plant the little tree near a big bush toward the back of the house. I felt in my little six year old mind that the bush would protect the little tree from getting dried out by the sun. Over the next ten years that little tree hardly grew. We knew something was wrong and that it was contrary to nature for a ten year old tree to be basically no different from a first year sapling. We discovered that the big bush was sapping up all of its nutrients and as the bush grew, the shade prevented the tree from getting the necessary sunlight. We decided to move the tree to another part of the yard that was adjacent to a creek that ran alongside our property. My mother had developed an interest in cultivating roses and aided me in staking the nearly dead little tree. We fed it all kinds of plant food and within 3 years the tree doubled in size and in 3 more years quickly grew to maturity. That little tree was designed by God to grow and mature, and it required nutrients, sunlight and our involvement in making sure it would maximize what it was created to do – grow!
Disciples of Jesus Christ are given in their new nature the inherent desire to want to mature in their faith. Ephesians 2:8-9 for example says: “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9 not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.” Most people will readily quote that text, however very few consider 2:10 which explains why God regenerates sinners to saving faith in the first place: “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.” To not engage in spiritual maturity is contrary to the Christian’s nature. In today’s post we want to begin considering the subject of “Growing up into spiritual maturity” out of Colossians 1:1-12.
Point of Application:
If you remember nothing else from this post today, the one thought that God would have us to understand from Colossians 1:1-12 would be this: Your calling as a Christian is to grow up into spiritual maturity.