- Pastor Luis Cruz
The Phases of Spiritual growth
Part 1 of Spiritual Growth Sermon Series
2 Peter 1:1-11, Luis Cruz, GCF Durham
Growth is a process. And it has been said so many times, “All living things grow.” Faith is not exempted, for it requires growth as our faith in Jesus is called a living faith (see Gal. 2:20). However, it takes time to grow. It doesn’t happen overnight. It happens throughout our lifetime, and it is done through many phases of development.
1. Growing in the knowledge of God.
“3 His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness… “8 For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” 2 Peter 1:3;8
From faith, grows the desire to know God intimately.
Knowing God produces the desire to live for Him.
Knowing God corrects our perspective of our self. “Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ.”
Greek: Doulos, a bond-servant, advancing the cause of his master. 2 Peter 1:1
Doulos means the slave doesn't have any rights or self-entitlement.
He relies on the grace of his Master even for food and nourishment.
“2 Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, 3 now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.” 1 Peter 2:2
Faith moves us to crave for the Word in increasing measure.
2. Growing in personal holiness.
“3 His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.” 2 Peter 1:3
In the highest sense, holiness, belongs to God.
God gave us Christ’s holiness through faith.
The key to personal holiness – having Jesus’ life in us. See 1John 5:20.
We practice personal holiness when we imitate Jesus.
Faith requires the application of Jesus’ words and deeds in us.
“5 For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; 6 and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; 7 and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love.” 2 Peter 1:5-7.
In partnership with the Spirit, we are responsible for our growth.
Living faith transforms us, acts in love, and impacts those around us.
3. Growing in Christian service.
“7 and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love.”8 For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 But whoever does not have them is nearsighted and blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their past sins.” 2 Peter 1:7-9
Holiness is something that God has given us, but it also requires the practice of His word.
Godliness is the inward character that the Spirit develops in us as we read, study and apply His word.
Christian service is the natural outcome of godliness.
Knowing God, loving Him, listening to His call and then serving Him willingly.
Something to think about today:
Examine your faith and see where God is leading you to do.
Think about the time you spent in the Word. Look for things that you need to give up in order to make room for your personal time with the Lord.
Remember, Jesus died for you so you can live for Him.