God expects His people to grow. This is evident from the teachings of the New Testament (1 Peter 2:2; 2 Peter 3:18; Ephesians 4:15).  Every Christian should realize that God desires that we be full grown Christians.  We should, further recognize that He will never be satisfied with us if we are endeavoring to live a life that is absent of spiritual growth. In this article we want to notice some things about what it means to be full grown Christians.

FULL GROWN CHRISTIANS HAVE CONVICTIONS – Christians must not live the life that Paul speaks of in Ephesians 4:14, “That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;”. As grown up Christians, we need to be careful to not allow ourselves to be engulfed in everything that is coming and going that is supposedly in the name of the Lord. Having convictions concerning things which are right in the sight of God is to be “grounded and settled” in the truth (Colossians 1:23). We must have our feet on the ground, and know why we believe what we do if we are to qualify as full-grown Christians.  It will not suffice to state a belief in a certain thing and then when pressed for an answer as to why state, “Because”.

FULL GROWN CHRISTIANS ARE FAITH CONTENDERS – Notice what Jude said of this in Jude 3, “Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.” There is as much a need today for Christians to “contend for the faith” as there was in the first century.  In this era of liberalism and other “isms” that are affecting the church, we must be ready and able to stand up for the truth. We must know how to answer men concerning our hope, as seen in the words of Peter in 1 Peter 3:15. If we are to be full grown Christians, then we must be willing to contend for the faith no matter what the personal results will be.

FULL GROWN CHRISTIANS PUT AWAY CHILDISH THINGS – The apostle Paul wrote of this need to the Corinthian church in 1 Corinthians 13:11, “When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.”  The brethren at Corinth were admonished by Paul to “quit you like men…” (1 Corinthians 16:13”.  This means to “act like men” as seen in the English Standard Version. When Christians pout, and must have their way, it is a good sign they have never really grown up, as they should have. If we are to ever be the full grown Christian that God desires that we be, we must put away our acting like children. We must act like the adult that God wants us to act like.

FULL GROWN CHRISTIANS ARE STRONG – It is a command of God that we be strong (Ephesians 6:10). If we are to grow strong, we must eat the right kind of food. Of course, this is said when dealing with spiritual food rather than physical (Matthew 4:4). If we are honest in our desire to be strong full grown Christians, the written word will be a basic part of our daily diet.

We will literally consume the Word of God on a regular basis. Notice what Jeremiah had to say of this in Jeremiah 15:16, “Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by thy name, O LORD God of hosts.” Likewise, consider what David said in Psalms 119:103, “How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” If we are to grow strong we must exercise ourselves unto godliness (Hebrews 5:14).  As exercise is valuable in developing physical strength, so it is in developing spiritual strength.

FULL GROWN CHRISTIANS ARE CHRIST LIKE – As Christians, we are told to have the “mind of Christ” (Philippians 2:5-8). We have, also, been told to follow in the steps of Christ (1 Peter 2:21). As Christians who are seeking to grow, we must continue to ask ourselves, “What would Christ do or say under these circumstances”? We should seek to determine what He would do in regards to all things pertaining to “life and godliness” (2 Peter 1:3).

FULL GROWN CHRISTIANS HAVE INFLUENCE – Influence is either good or bad. The Christian should seek to have a good influence on others. Our lives are to be shining lights for good in order to bring glory to God (Matthew 5:16). Our lives are ordered after the New Testament way of life (1 Timothy 4:16).

As Christians, we are confronted with the question, “are we growing in the areas that we have just considered”? We need to ask, “are we a daily grower, or have we decided to remain as we are”?  We need to be challenged to examine ourselves to see if we are growing as we should be growing (2 Corinthians 13:5).