Monday, November 24, 2014

"No Experts"

     If spiritual maturity could be measured, and if we could find the godliest believer on the planet, he or she would be no less in need of growth in God's grace and truth than would the least mature Christian.

    "But grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ" (II Peter 3:18).

    The Apostle Peter directed his command to all (and would have included himself if asked).  Because we are united to an infinite Lord possessed of character and nature qualities that have no measure, we will always be discovering new aspects of His glory, and thus subject to growth.  We become more like Him as we know Him better, and we always need to know Him better.  "Furthermore then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more" (I Thessalonians 4:1).

   In a world of experts on every subject, there are none in the body of Christ.  "If any man think that he knoweth anything, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know" (I Corinthians 8:2).  Certainly some have progressed more than others, and some are called to communicate God's truth (and faithfully and effectively do so).  However, the Apostle Paul informs us in no matter about God and His truth does any person ever reach exalted status.  No experts on prayer exist in Christendom, nor on faith, or obedience, or prophecy, or evangelism, or how to interpret Scripture, or on God and His inexorable ways, or on any other subject.  Again, of every believer, Paul declared "nothing yet as he ought to know."  All stand in need of growth.

    This is a vital truth to know and embrace, primarily because in our generation, modern marketing tactics assign, whether directly or tacitly, expert status to Christian communicators no less than to the world's virtuosos.  This is a dangerous business because it can lead to overmuch confidence in those who may possess eloquent voices and skillful pens, but who nevertheless walk on feet of clay.  Such ones may be faithful brethren and undershepherds, but their frailty as human beings must not be overlooked.  Only One warrants our unreserved and unequivocal faith, and He countenances no rivals.   "His name alone is excellent" (Psalm 148:13).  Failure to recognize such truth can lead to more spiritual maladies than we can presently consider.  Suffice it to suggest that we recognize our native tendency to exalt things and people other than God, and the Bible's clear teaching that regarding our Lord and His truth, all stand in need of growth.  There are no experts.

"Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended, but this one thing I do: forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
(Philippians 3:13-14)

Weekly Memory Verse
    He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He might have the preeminence.
(Colossians 1:18)

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