SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 13, 2020
"INTRODUCTION" sermon by Pastor Kevin Rutledge
HEALTHY PEOPLE GROW
GOD EXPECTS HIS CHILDREN TO GROW UP IN THEIR FAITH
Ephesians 4:12-16 - to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.
Hebrews 5:11 - 6:1 - We have much to say about this, but it is hard to explain because you are slow to learn. In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God's word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil. Therefore let us leave the elementary teachings about Christ and go on to maturity.
1 Peter 2:2 - Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation,
CHARACTERISTICS OF MATURE BELIEVERS:
THEY HAVE AN INTIMATE RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD AND JESUS
John 17:3 - Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.
John 15:15 - I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.
James 4:8 - Come near to God and he will come near to you.
OBEY THE WORD OF GOD
Matthew 28:20 - and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.
Colossians 1:9 - For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding.
James 1:5 - If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.
KNOW GOD’S TRUTH
Ephesians 4:14 (NLT) - Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth.
POSSESS OUTSTANDING CHARACTER
Galatians 5:22-23 - But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
THEY SHARE THEIR FAITH
2 Corinthians 5:20 - We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ's behalf: Be reconciled to God.
THEY SERVE OTHERS WITH THE GIFTS AND RESOURCES GOD GIVES THEM
1 Peter 4:10 - Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God's grace in its various forms.
OUR MODEL IS JESUS
Luke 6:40 - A student is not above his teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like his teacher.
Ephesians 4:15 - Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ.
Romans 8:29 - For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.
THREE INPUTS WE NEED TO GROW SPIRITUALLY
Colossians 2:19 - He has lost connection with the Head, from whom the whole body, supported and held together by its ligaments and sinews, grows as God causes it to grow.
Philippians 1:6 - being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
Philippians 2:13 - for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.
Ephesians 4:16 - From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.
1 Thessalonians 5:11 - Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.
Colossians 1:28 - We proclaim him, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone fully mature in Christ.
1 Timothy 4:15 - Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress.