Generational Decline in Spiritual Maturity

1Sa 2:19 Moreover his mother made him a little coat, and brought [it]  to him from year to year, when she came up with her husband to offer  the yearly sacrifice.

One of the great concerns I have of Christendom, in this generation  and the last, is the lack of growth and development in those that  profess the name of Christ

<!–more–>The majority of those that make a profession of salvation, follow the  Lord in baptism, and unite to a local assembly remain as they are and  give no evidence of maturing from birth to a teenager and then into an  adult.  It is evident in the Scriptures that there are varying degrees  of maturity in the family of God for John speaks of little children,  young men, and fathers in Christ.  1 John 2:12-14

Every thing that is in creation has something to tell us of God.  In  the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.  Ps 19:1 The  heavens declare the  glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. Ro 1:20 For the  invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen,  being understood by the things that are made, [even] his eternal power and Godhead…

If the visible things teach us of the invisible, how is it in nature  that a child is born and then begins his/her growth &amp; development  and this is not evident in the spiritual realm in the family of God?   Was not marriage instituted by the LORD to show the relationship  between Christ and His church?  Eph 5:30 For we are members of His body,  of His flesh, and of His bones.  31 For this cause shall a man leave  his father and mother and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two  shall be one flesh.  32 This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning  Christ and the church.

This brings us to the opening verse in our lesson.  Hannah made a  coat each year and brought it to her son.  Last year’s coat would have  been outgrown and he would need another one for the coming year.  We  have our children born in our families and in the church family and we  watch them grow into young men and women.  The fact that God has set  this before us to teach us of growth and development of the spiritual  man is enough to make one ask what is wrong in the professing churches  today.

A parent would get the child to a doctor if there was a loss of  appetite for a period of time.  They know that something is wrong, for  the child doesn’t want food or drink.  Can the Lord have children that  have not a spiritual appetite for the things of Christ?  Are there  children born in the family of God (Jn 3 ye must be born again) that  never grow or develop?  Does last year’s coat still fit; not in a  growing young man or woman.

The question needs to be answered by us all.  Am I growing in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior?

2Pe 3:18 But grow in grace, and [in] the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

1Th 4:10 And indeed ye do it toward all the brethren which are in all Macedonia: but we beseech you, brethren, that ye increase more and more;

1Co 3:2 I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able [to bear it], neither yet now are ye able.

He is not commending them but rather a rebuke because they are not developing as they should.

Heb 5:12 For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need  that one teach you again which [be] the first principles of the oracles  of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.

The child can live upon milk for the first few months of life but for  growth to continue as it should, they must begin a diet of solid foods.

Again, I would ask, “What is wrong with professing Christendom?”   Many churches have seen large increases in numbers, but what about the  increase in spirituality?  Where are the congregations that have  ‘fathers’ in them that have developed over the years from a new born  child to fathers that have known HIM that is from the beginning? 1 Jn  2:13

What of you and me?  Do we know more of Christ today than 10 years  ago?  Is He dearer to us today than last year?  Do we still have a  hunger and thirst after righteousness.  As long as one is living; they  will have an appetite which leaves us to wonder about the great number  of professing Christians that have little or no interest in the Savior.

Lord, visit again Thy church in these days and revive her in the midst of years.

Hab 3:2 O LORD, I have heard thy speech, [and] was afraid: O LORD,  revive thy work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years  make known; in wrath remember mercy.

We ask in Christ’s Name.

Barrett Holloway

01/26/2011