Don't Act Like Such a Baby
Have you ever heard someone admonished by the words, “don’t act like such a baby,” or “act your age?”
Naturally we have an expectation that babies will grow up to be mature adults. We do not consider it natural nor healthy if a person does not exhibit age appropriate behaviors as they grow toward becoming a mature person.
But what about spiritually? Should Christians grow up spiritually? And if so, how does this process proceed, and what are the signs and passages of such spiritual growth in the life of a Christian?
In Hebrews 5:12-13, this admonition is given, “For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food. For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe.”
The writer of Hebrews is addressing Christians who were not what they “ought to be.” Having experienced what is necessary for spiritual growth they have retreated to immature behaviors, likened to a baby refusing to be weaned from the breast. They have not become skilled “in the word of righteousness,” and are behaving like babes spiritually.
Perhaps there are certain questions we might ask to locate ourselves spiritually, such as:
• Have I been a Christian long enough to have made more progress spiritually?
• Do I take personal responsibility for my spiritual growth?
• As a Christian am I behaving responsibly in my local church and community?
• Do I continue in learning to know what the bible teaches, and do I share what I learn with others by word and deed? (2 Timothy 3:7)
• Have I retreated from the progress I once made spiritually, being content to live like a baby Christian?
• Is my life continuing to be transformed by the teachings of the bible? (Romans 12:2)
We all know that chronological age is not always accompanied by the spiritual and mental maturity appropriate to it. But we must not surrender to such inequities.
Just two verses following the passage cited above (in Hebrews 6:1) we are encouraged by the words, “let us go on to perfection.” Teleiotes, the Greek term translated “perfection” in the New King James Version of the Bible, may also be translated “maturity” as it is in the English Standard Version. The same Holy Spirit that identifies our shortcomings is our helper to bring us forward to spiritual maturity.
Perhaps you would care to help yourself, or others, to become established concerning “the elementary principles of Christ” and “go on to maturity.” You are welcome to join us for a free, four hour seminar on this subject September 8th, in Morrisburg, Ontario, at the Riverside Recreation Center, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Lunch is also free.
According to Ephesians 4:11-16, spiritual maturity is the will of God for His Church and each Christian. I encourage you today to continue doing those things necessary for genuine spiritual growth.
“As newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby,” and always continue to “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” (1 Peter 2:2; 2 Peter 3:18)
Rev. George T. Frey,
Faith Christian Center