Faith and Spiritual Growth
“You, therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, take care that you are not carried away with the error of lawless people and lose your own stability. But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.” – II Peter 3:17-18
Spiritual growth nor spiritual maturity in an aspect of your Christian walks never “just happens,” and as many have already discovered in academia, sleeping with a book under your pillow before an exam does not produce an osmosis of information, transferring the information from your book to the brain. Growth is an important Christian command, as Scripture says: “His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to His own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire. For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins” (II Peter 1:3-9).
Notice II Peter 1:5 directs the child of God to make every effort to add to our faith and is not written passively, suggesting if and when we have time permitting in a carnal lifestyle. Despite how the religious world continues to inaccurately use and apply the definition of faith, Romans 10:17 teaches the child of God that faith comes only from hearing God’s Word, and coincidently, faith can only grow by continuing to hear God’s Word. Hebrews 11:6 should remove any doubt as to God’s desire for His children to grow in faith and the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ. “And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that He exists and that he rewards those who seek him.”
Regardless of the high esteem held by men and maybe even some brethren to doing good works, the “good work” has to be first lawful or Scriptural to please God, as Hebrews 11:6 teaches that without faith it is IMPOSSIBLE to please God, as the child of God must walk by faith and not by sight (II Corinthians 5:7). Scripture teaches faith without works (action) is dead according to James 2:17, but Scripture also teaches good works without faith and obedience are also worthless (in vain) in Matthew 7:21-23.
— Damon Long