Mike Focht 9/22/2023
The Bible is clear that spiritual growth is a reality.
The doctrine of spiritual life and growth has taken a beating recently. In most of our Christian society, it is underemphasized, while some religious circles go so far as to ignore it completely. A few overemphasize it at times (though this is indeed rare in our day and age). Still, it is a clearly established Biblical truth.
The Bible recognizes our various stages of spiritual life in several ways. The Word of God describes Christians as spiritual and carnal, babes and mature, teachers and learners, adults and children, meat eaters and milk drinkers, heavenly and worldly, etc.
The point here is straightforward. All Christians are not spiritually the same simply because they are Christians. True spiritual life grows. We see this naturally as it applies to physical life. Every human that is alive enjoys real life, but we all understand human life possesses various stages. Each stage of life presents unique differences. A baby, a teen, a thirty-something, and an octogenarian are all alive but at very different stages of maturity.
So too, true, born-again believers with new life from God are all alive but in very different places of spiritual growth. The differences in their spiritual lives are not necessarily proof of something wrong. A Christian who came to know Christ a week ago should have a very different spiritual life than one who came to know Christ forty years ago. Both may be alive. Both may be pleasing to Christ. Both also still have plenty of room to grow.
If we think that all Christians are the same simply because they have a new life from God, we are either not doing a very good job reading our Bibles, or someone is not doing a very good job teaching us the Bible. God’s truth is very clear on this topic. Spiritual life is a reality. Spiritual growth is also a reality. In fact, spiritual growth is only relevant to those with spiritual life. If we know and love God, we should have a healthy concern and desire to grow spiritually.
You therefore, beloved, since you know this beforehand, beware lest you also fall from your own steadfastness, being led away with the error of the wicked; but grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen.