The last diagnosis I want to teach you is being a mature Christian. Just as a child desires to be a grownup; likewise, every Christian should have a goal of being a mature Christian.
A baby and a carnal Christian’s lives exemplify the Greek term “kata sarka” which means abnormal, out of harmony with their new identity. As they grew spiritually, they put off the old man (practicing sin) and put on the new man (practicing righteousness). In addition to Jesus being their Savior, He is now their Lord. They are led by the Holy Spirit and have grown into a mature Christian. Now their lives exemplify the Greek term “kata pneuma”, normal and in harmony with their new identity.
Mature Christians are “souled out” to God and have a vibrant, intimate relationship with Him. They pray without ceasing as commanded in 1 Thessalonians 5:15 and have become prayer warriors. Hebrews 5:14 says, “solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.” Because of a steady diet of the solid food of the Bible, they are able to operate in discernment. In obedience to Joshua 1:8, they meditate and do God’s Word day and night resulting in a prosperous and successful life.
Mature Christians are active church members. They attend Christian Education classes, prayer meetings, and are cheerful givers and willing servants in the House of the Lord. They know what God has anointed them to do and use their spiritual gifts to serve in God’s Kingdom. They are “nevertheless Christians” and are working to fulfill God’s unique purpose for their life. Mature Christians are living to hear God say to them one day “well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou has been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things; enter thou into the joy of the Lord.”
Mature Christians exude forgiveness and love for God and all people in their walk. They exhibit an uncompromised lifestyle and are consistent faithful witnesses that glorify God. Keep doing what you are doing so others will be inspired to continue to grow to spiritual maturity also.
This concludes the It’s Time for your Spiritual Checkup series! Its purpose was to help you truthfully reflect and examine yourself. If you self-diagnosed yourself as a baby, carnal, or a maturing Christian, follow the treatment plans and prescriptions given for each diagnosis. As people get older in the natural, people may say “you look like your father or mother.” It is my prayer that all Christians will grow into a mature Christian that resembles God, our spiritual Father. God is willing and able to help all Christians grow as they seek, discover, and fulfill His unique purpose for their lives!
Another possible diagnosis from a spiritual checkup is being a growing Christian. They have had a revelation of what it means to be a Christian. Developing their relationship with God is now important so they spend time with Him consistently in prayer and in His Word. As a result, their knowledge of who God is and who they are in Him is growing. Their belief and trust in God are also flourishing.
Because growing Christians have experienced some spiritual growth, a hunger and thirst for the Word and the things of God are being cultivated. They have established a daily time of devotion. Recurrent attendance at Christian Education classes has become their norm. Using their spiritual gifts and talents in willing service at church has caused them to seek God for their purpose.
Growing Christians have become a living epistle of 2 Thessalonians 1:3 (NIV), “your faith is growing more and more, and the love all of you have for one another is increasing.” It is evident to all that they have changed. Their concern for the salvation of their family members, friends, and others is ever-increasing. They are learning how to witness and share their faith with others and have begun to live a consecrated life unto the Lord.
If you are a growing Christian, it is my prayer that you will continue on your journey until you reach spiritual maturity!
stay tuned for part 7 of it’s time for your spiritual checkup for one more possible diagnosis!
The next possible diagnosis one may receive from a spiritual checkup is being a baby Christian. This is someone who has accepted Jesus as their Savior but has not grown spiritually yet due to a lack of consistently eating God’s Word.
Baby Christians are dull of hearing, immature spiritually, need someone to minister to them, and are not able to minister to others yet. Because there is no spiritual growth, they are unable to stand on their own and must be carried spiritually.
All new Christians are baby Christians but it can also be those who has been saved for a time—1, 2 years, or longer but have not grown spiritually. The Bible says in Hebrews 5:12, “For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.” One of Jesus’ disciples asked Him to teach them how to pray. Baby Christians, too, must be taught how to pray. They are not able to get a prayer through so others have to pray for them.
In the natural, mothers feed their new born babies breast milk or formula. They cannot eat solid food yet as their bodies are not developed enough to do so. Baby Christians, too, require spiritual milk, elementary truths of the Bible because they are not mature enough to digest the solid food of the Word of God.
The treatment plan or prescription to grow beyond the baby Christian level is to eat God’s Word habitually. 1 Peter 2:2 proclaims that, “As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby.”
I pray that you will desire to eat God’s Word daily so that you can grow spiritually!
Stay tuned for It’s Time for your Spiritual Checkup – Part 5 to learn the next possible diagnosis!