Monday, April 02, 2012
FIVE PRINCIPLES OF SPIRITUAL GROWTH
The most important decision in life is the decision to accept Jesus as personal Savior and Lord. With this decision of faith a completely new life begins. For our physical life we need air, food, rest, and exercise in order to develop our capacities, grow, and maintain a healthy life. Principles for growth are also found in the spiritual realm. If we follow them, we will become mature Christians and enjoy our fellowship with Christ.
I. First Principle: Reading the Bible
There are very few persons who would not want to eat for a week or a day. Food is necessary to stay alive. Being without food for some time makes us feeble and sick. Lack of spiritual food has the same effects on our spiritual life. Therefore, we read God Word’s on a daily basis.
1 Pet 1:23; 2:2
II. Second Principle: Praying
Prayer is a dialogue with our loving heavenly Father. Oftentimes weakness of character can be attributed to a lack of prayer. When it feels most difficult to pray, we should pray most. Therefore, we daily approach God in prayer.
Matt 26:40-75 - Prayer and its results.
1Thess 5:17 - To pray without ceasing means that during the day our thoughts turn to God again and again and we just talk to him freely and openly.
Psalm 50:15 - This text has been called God’s phone number.
III. Third Principle: Seeking Fellowship with Other Christians
Fellowship means to spend time with others who also love Christ. A pile of logs normally allows for a good fire. If, however, one log is separated from the others the fire on that log goes out soon. Likewise, Christians must support each other and stand together, otherwise the fire of their enthusiasm will soon be extinguished. Fellowship is essential for Christian growth. Therefore, we belong to a church and are actively involved in it.
Acts 2:42, 46
IV. Fourth Principle: Bearing Witness
A witness is a person who testifies what he or she has seen and heard. A witness shares his or her own personal experience. Whoever has a living and personal relationship with Christ can be a witness for Him. A genuine Christian life is contagious. Therefore, we cannot abstain from talking about Jesus.
1 Pet 3:15
It is a privilege and the responsibility of each Christian to reach their neighbors and all humanity with Christ's wonderful message.
V. Fifth Principle: Being Obedient
The key to rapid spiritual growth is immediate obedience as soon as we recognize what God’s will is. It would be unwise to disobey the one who really loves us and who alone knows what is best for us. God desires that we live a meaningful and successful life. Therefore, we obey God always.
Matt 6:24; 22:37
John 14:21; 15:10
These five principles help us to stay in contact with Jesus Christ and grow spiritually. The first two refer to our relationship with the Lord. Through Scripture God communicates with us. Through prayer we talk to God. The next two principles bear on our relationship with humans. In fellowship we enjoy interchange and unity with Christian brothers and sisters. In witnessing we pass on the good news about Jesus to others. Obedience is directed toward God but oftentimes it also affects our fellow human beings. If we follow these principles, joy, peace, love, and fellowship with our Lord Jesus Christ will increase.
by: Ekkehardt Mueller