By Waylon Bailey ~
Who is responsible for my growth in Christ, and how does my sanctification happen?
Sanctification, of course, refers to my being set apart for Christ and growing in His likeness.
Who makes that happen?
In one sense, salvation and faith is a one time event which brings us into eternal relationship with God. As I often say, it is Jesus plus nothing. It is not works. It is the work of God on our behalf. He did for us what we couldn’t do for ourselves.
In another sense, it is up to us. The apostle Peter made that clear. He counseled the persecuted and dispersed church to add to their faith.
These are the kinds of things that must be added: knowledge, self-control, perseverance, brotherly affection, godliness, and love (2 Peter 1:5-7).
The apostle wrote about possessing these qualities in “increasing measure” (2 Peter 1:8). These qualities will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Therefore, you and I must participate with God in our growth in the Lord Jesus Christ. We must set out a deliberate plan to grow in Him.
Here are four areas which are essential to your becoming like Christ.
First, you must be intimately connected with the word of God as found in Holy Scripture. Scripture is God’s revelation of Himself. He has given it to us to make Himself known to us.
Every Christian should read Scripture, meditate upon it, memorize it, and study the Word of God. Each of us should have a plan of how best to accomplish this necessary part of our growth in Christ.
Second, we must be “all in” with the body of Christ. Christians cannot neglect the assembling of themselves together and expect to grow in Christ. The church is God’s plan, and we must follow His plan.
Third, we must be serving in the body of Christ. Sometimes people ask me how many ministers we have at our church. I always give them the number of our full-time pastors, but I want to tell them that we have hundreds and even thousands of Christians who are ministering in our church. It is God’s plan that every believer would minister in the name of Jesus. Service accentuates your growth. It puts your growth on a strong upward trajectory.
Fourth, you must find other believers who can mentor you and help you to become the disciple God wants you to be. Your mentor’s study and service will be used of God to help you grow in your knowledge of Christ.
God wants you to know him and to become like him.
Will you work with Him in growing as He wants you to grow?
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