An excellent commentary on this verse is 2 Corinthians 3:18 which shows how the exhortation is to be fulfilled, namely, by looking often into the face of our Lord in the mirror of His Word.
July 11, 1954 Are We Growing as Christians? 1 Cor. 3:1-3; Eph. 4:11-16; 2 Pet. 1:5-8; 3:18 Pointers on the Lesson
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Helps for the Children How We Grow Like Jesus Ephesians 4:11-16
The question which forms the subject for today’s lesson is most vital. The answer always ought to be in the affirma tive. There is something wrong if the Christian is not manifesting growth in his Christian experience. It is normal to grow. Something is radically wrong if a child does not grow. He will grow unless there is some hindering influence. The same is true of the child of God. God expects each one of His children to grow in the things that relate to godli ness. He has supplied abundant means for this growth. Unless these means are neglected or set aside they will grow. How about you? God says, grow in grace. Are you living in daily obedience to this exhortation? The Recipe for Growth 1 Cor. 3:1-3 If there is to be growth in grace there must be some feeding on the “meat” (v. 2) of the Word. Paul was writing in the passage before us to certain “car nal” Christians who remained as “babes in Christ” (v. 1) and manifested an en vious and divisive spirit (v. 3). They had to be coddled as fretful children, only able to feed on the milk of the Word. Evidently they were saved but they had not developed very far in the graces of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22). They exhibited too many fleshly tendencies. They could not be called spiritual Christians (v. 1). They needed a fuller separation unto God so that they could appreciate and derive blessing from the meat of God’s Word. The Goal of Christian Growth Eph. 4:11-16 In this passage the writer shows how God has blessed the church with gifts of men with various types of ministry for the purpose of edifying the body of Christ. This edification is to the end that each and all of the members of Christ’s body shall become like Him, “unto the meas ure of the stature of the fulness of Christ” (v. 13). God does not want us to be weak Christians with no stability (v. 14), but strong Christians filled with truth and love and growing “ up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ” (v. 15). The Continuance of Growth 2 Pet. 1:5-8; 3:18 In the first of these two passages Peter indicates that seven things are to bud out of the Christian’s faith. Faith is pre supposed as the gift of God (v. 1) and is not required to be added or ministered by us. Having received the gift of faith, seven fruits are to spring forth from the believer’s life. Study each of these fruits and see if you are bearing them in your life. Peter’s last word to us is in the form of a positive exhortation to “ grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ” (3:18).
Memory Verse: "But speaking the truth in love, [we] may grow up into him in all things . . ." Ephesians 4:15a. Have you boys and girls seen a blue print for a new house or a pattern for a dress or suit? Do you realize that God has a blueprint or a pattern for each one who knows the Lord Jesus Christ as Saviour? He has one perfect plan for each life, and only those who find His plan for their life can be truly happy and satisfied. Ephesians 4:11 reminds us that God has a different work for each of His children to do for Him. He also reminds us of the purpose of our work—to lead others to our wonderful Lord and to help them to grow more like Him each day after He becomes their personal Sav iour. We are to “grow up into Him in all things”—we are to constantly pray that we may grow more like the Lord Jesus and that we may be exactly like His blueprint or pattern for our lives. Perhaps God has chosen us for a very small part of His great blueprint for our church or our town. Each part is impor tant if the whole plan is to be perfect. Many early Christians died rather than refuse to be true to the Lord Jesus Many of them sinned and failed in their testimdny for their Lord. Now, as then, Christians can be true to the Lord Jesus and follow His perfect plan for their lives only through the strength which He gives to them. Are you growing each day to be more like your Saviour? Feed upon His Word and spend much time in prayer each day that you may grow spiritually as well as physically. July 18, 1954 Growing Through Bible Study Acts 17:10, i l l 1 Tim. 4:13-16; 2 Tim. 2:15; 3:14-17; Heb. 4:12 Pointers on the Lesson What food is to the physical body, the Word of God is to the spiritual part of man. There can be no growth in the body without physical nourishment. Neith er will there be growth in the spiritual life without constant feeding upon God’s Word. It is food for the soul. Since this is so today’s lesson study is a very important part of the series of lessons on Growth in Christian Living. Some dif ferent aspect of this matter is found in each of the five passages selected for our study. Searching the Scriptures Acts 17:10, 11 There is a comparison here between the Jews of Berea and Thessalonica. In the latter place there was opposition to the Christian testimony (v. 5), but in CONTINUED ►
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