Christian Growth in a Changing World

MEMORY VERSE: “Grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” —II Peter 3:18


NO ONE can deny that the society in which we live is a rapidly changing one. Further, those who have set aside the aspirations of this present life, and instead have consecrated themselves to the doing of the Heavenly Father’s will, must realize the great importance of keeping pace, so to speak, with the development of Christian growth in our fast-changing world.

The simple question arises, what is Christian growth? And, although different ones would undoubtedly stress various aspects of the development of a Christ like character, we will all perhaps agree that to grow in the likeness of our dear Lord and Savior is to grow in favor with him through an increasing personal acquaintance and fellowship with him. The true child of God must first of all have a knowledge of his redemption which was made possible through the precious blood of Jesus. He must exercise faith in and dependence upon all of the promises of God which come to him as a result of that perfect sacrifice, including an understanding and appreciation of his justification which is necessary to cover his inherited weaknesses of the flesh. Then, through prayer, communion, and observation of God’s will, he must seek to carry out to the best of his ability the divine will in his life.

If the consecrated child of God is of this attitude of heart and mind, he will realize a gradual change in his life—regardless of the changes in the world around him, whereas he is in the world although no part of it—and there will be a ripening of the fruits of the spirit in his own character. Progress in this direction is pleasing and acceptable to God.

The Apostle Peter directs his message in his second epistle to those “that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Savior Jesus Christ.” (1:1) He then speaks of the “exceeding great and precious promises” and reminds us that through these we might be “partakers of the divine nature.” (1:4) As a yardstick of our growth in Christ likeness he points out that we are to do certain things that will make us more pleasing to our Heavenly Father; that is, adding to our faith “virtue,” “knowledge,” “temperance,” “patience,” “godliness,” “brotherly kindness,” and “charity” [or love].—1:5,6,7

The wise apostle, writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, understood fully the necessity of Christian growth in a changing world and attempted to encourage the brethren to remember those things that would keep them from falling while in the narrow way. Note his admonition: “Therefore I will not neglect [footnote, be ready always] to remind you of these things, although you know and are established in the present truth.”—II Pet. 1:12, Diaglott

Indeed, we have a warfare before us! Although we may be “established in the present truth” we must ever keep in mind that our election to the high position to which we have been called is not yet made sure. The race for the prize is still before us, and we must be diligent to continue fighting the good fight of faith if we hope ever to be with our dear Lord in his kingdom.

To have merely consecrated ourselves to the doing of the divine will and then to sit back without considering the dangers that surround the life of the new creature is to underestimate the warnings of the great Apostle Paul that “we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness [marginal translation, wicked spirits] in high places.” (Eph. 6:12) With these thoughts in mind let us not forget the precious truths which we have learned, but put them into practice in our daily lives, that one day we may hear those wonderful words, “Enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.”

Dawn Bible Students Association
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