A childís parents worry if that child is not growing or developing properly. In the same way, Christians should care much about whether they themselves are developing in their relationship with Christ. The first Christian leaders often had to warn Christians about this matter (1 Corinthians 3:1-3; Hebrews 5:11-13).
Someone who has only recently become a Christian may know little about God, or about the Bible. That person, like a young child, needs much help and support from mature Christians. Otherwise, he will depend on his feelings and his impressions, and not on the word of God, the Bible.
Those feelings and impressions cause that new Christian to be in a very weak state. Paul compares him to a small boat in a great storm at sea. The new Christian prefers those teachers who are impressive. Like a child, he believes them, whether their message is right or wrong (2 Corinthians 11:3-4). Like a small boat in a storm, he is in great danger. Some of those teachers are not serving Christ, but the devil (Acts 20:29-30; 2 Corinthians 11:13-15).
Of course God does not want his people to remain in that weak state. Instead, God gathers his people into churches, with leaders who will teach them from the Bible. There, the people will learn to be mature Christians, who are able to help and to teach weaker Christians.
However, some Christians have not yet found a good church like that. So, of course, they should pray and study the Bible both privately, and with any Christians whom they know. In particular, they should pray for God to guide them into a suitable church, where they can learn more about him.
Next part: Speak the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15)
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© 2018, Keith Simons.