Back to Men of Integrity Subscribe to Men of Integrity
Log In | My Account | Help

Home > Fuel Your Faith > It's Time to Grow Up

It's Time to Grow Up
Mark D. Roberts
Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Average rating: Not Rated [ see ratings/comments ]


We see in Ephesians 4:14 that we are not to be infants who are "tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching." Infants, in this context, are those who are influenced by teaching that contradicts the core truth of Christian faith. Such teaching comes from those who practice trickery for selfish gain.

I wonder, though, if the phrase "every wind of teaching" might also include that which is not hard-core heresy, but simply misguided or distracting. As a pastor, I have occasionally counseled people who rejected basic Christian faith. But, far more commonly, I have dealt with those who were surfing the wave of the latest trendy theology or philosophy. In some cases, they fell under the influence of a popular media preacher whose theology was questionable at best. In other cases, the disturbing wind came from a secular guru. Even if the spiritual infants didn't abandon their faith, their lives became focused on something other than the gospel of Jesus Christ and its implications. Thus, they were tossed around in their faith and life.

The use of the metaphor of infants implies that spiritually immature people are not able to make themselves grow up. Real babies depend on others to feed them, clothe them, and protect them. So it is with believers who are young in the faith. They need to be instructed and equipped by spiritual leaders, especially pastor-teachers (4:11). But the responsibility for helping immature believers falls not only upon the identified leaders but also upon the whole church. (See Eph. 4:16 and 1 Cor. 12-14.)

All of us begin our Christian lives as "infants," no matter our chronological age. God intends for each of us to grow up as the body of Christ does its work in our lives. As we grow into maturity, we become those who teach and nurture others, so that they—and the whole body—might grow up in Christ (Eph. 4:15).

Mark Roberts is a regular contributor to TheHighCalling.org and the senior advisor and theologian-in-residence for Foundations for Laity Renewal. He is the author of several books including Can We Trust the Gospels? This article is adapted with permission from his original article "Grow Up: Helping Spiritual Babies to Become Mature" at TheHighCalling.org. All rights reserved.

Unless otherwise noted, Scriptures quoted are taken from the New Living Translation.

Special Offer: Free Trial Issue

Yes!, send me a free trial issue of Men of Integrity.

If I like it, I'll pay just $19.95 and get five more bimonthly issues (a full year in all), plus complete web access. If not, I'll simply return my bill marked "cancel", owe nothing and keep my free trial issue.


Subscribe to Men of Integrity
Name
Street Address
City/State/Zip
Email Address

Canadian Orders | Give a Gift


Sign up for our free newsletter

Join the Conversation

Average User Rating: Not rated

No comments

Use your Men of Integrity login to easily comment on this article.
Not part of the community? Subscribe, or on public pages, register for a free account.

Log In OR Subscribe OR Register







FOLLOW US:

Facebook  Twitter  Google +  







Featured Items