- Joe Norton
“Therefore, laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking, as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby” (2 Peter 2:1-2).
Nothing is more important in our lives than growth—physical and spiritual growth. Physically, we understand the concept of growth: with proper soil, planting, and tending, plants grow; with proper nutrition and exercise, children grow; and the same is true for animals.
From a spiritual perspective, growth is a central theme in the New Testament. In fact, twenty-four passages insist that we are to grow up in Christ. Scholars define the words “grow up” as follows: “increase in power and strength; bring up to manhood; increase in size; to grow up in union with Christ.”
As well, the writings of the New Testament issue an imperative—not an option—that we grow up in every way as a Christian: in our relationship with Jesus, in living lives that resemble the kind of life that Jesus lived, in our union with Him, and in our dedication to Him.
Fulfilling this mandate requires that we immerse ourselves in His word, beginning with a proper understanding of the basic elements (the pure milk) and moving on to more complex issues (the meat). Only then can we mature into the kind of Christian He wants us to be.