September 27, 2017
… let us leave the elementary doctrine of Christ and go on to maturity,… Hebrews 6:1
One morning in exercise class, I mentioned to the instructor that it seemed like a particular exercise was getting easier. He replied with what should have been obvious to me: “You can use heavier weights.” Point taken. What I was tempted to celebrate as a “mission accomplished” was actually a signal that it was time to keep improving.
That applies to our spiritual growth as well. It is certainly a blessing that our Lord has delivered to us free and full salvation received simply by faith in Jesus. Given our propensity to feel unforgiven for sins God has forgotten, we do need to receive that Good News frequently in God’s Word and Sacrament. However, if we are to grow in the faith, for our sake and for those we mentor in the faith, it is incumbent upon us to grow in knowledge about that faith.
To dig deeper into the meaning of Scripture is as rewarding as it is difficult. In a television series, a man was digging for a treasure his sister had buried twenty years earlier. Just as he was about to give up, his shovel struck the desired target. He had to dig deeper than he originally planned, but it paid off.
What treasures of God’s Word will you find when you dig deeper into the precious ground of God’s truths? As I continue to explore more deeply, I often discover new meanings and applications in familiar verses. When I teach what I learn, students ask questions that remind me that I have even more to learn. How many parents have searched the Scriptures (or asked the pastor) because a child asked a question they could not answer?
There are many reasons to dig deeper and to grow in knowledge of our faith. One of these is faithful stewardship of God’s gifts for the spiritual good of others. To give wise counsel, disciple a young believer, or witness to an unbeliever is more rewarding and effective when God’s Word has equipped us.
So I invite you to continue to dig the treasures of the Word. Whether you do so on your own or with others in a class, the rewards are great. If you have plateaued in your faith, and it starts to seem too easy, use heavier weights.