OUR SPIRITUAL JOURNEY
Our spiritual journey begins with a time of innocence. Early childhood is a wonderful time of purity and growth. Jesus pointed to little children and said “of such is the kingdom of heaven.” “Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 19:14) The innocence of childhood is extraordinarily difficult to recapture as an adult. As adults we can never again experience the utter innocence of young children whose parents love and care for them. As Christians we become children again, children of God. “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.” (Galatians 3:26-27)
Our Journey away from God: You die spiritually because of your own sins, not because of Adam's sin. Spiritual death is far more serious than physical death. Spiritual death is very serious because this means an eternal separation from the life of God. There can be no worse thing that could happen to a person. Our journey of unrighteousness involves things like fornication, idolatry, adultery, being homosexual or a prostitute, stealing, being covetous, being a drunkard, or a reviler or an extortion or many other actions and thoughts. (1 Corinthians 6:9-11) In Ezekiel 18:20 we read, “The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him.” On our journey away from God we make such poor choices. We should do better! All the choices that we make should be based upon what is right in the sight of God. "What man is he that feareth the LORD? him shall he teach in the way that he shall choose." (Psalm 25:12) We have the freedom to conduct our life in any way that we want. However, if our choices take us away from God we are making a tragic mistake.
Our Journey back to God: The journey back to God involves truth. It requires much effort but we can come to the knowledge of the truth. God “will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.” (1 Timothy 2:4) This journey back to God involves repentance and acknowledging of the truth. Paul wrote, “In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth.” (2 Timothy 2:25) The journey back to God means that we must be honest enough to accept His truth. “The elder unto the elect lady and her children, whom I love in the truth; and not I only, but also all they that have known the truth.” (2 John 1:1) Truth is knowable and we can distinguish between truth and error. “We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.” (1 John 4:6) Truth is absolute and knowable and we must walk in it.
Our Journey in God: The desire of the Lord is that each Christian love Him and be faithful to Him. The Christian life is a life that is to be lived every day for Christ and lived in God. We must allow the example of Jesus to be the pattern for our every thought and action. “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.” (Philippians 1:21) Let us spend every day of our life living for Jesus. Our journey in God may not always be easy. This journey includes, (1) Having a mind to work in the church, (2) Having a willingness to study the Bible, (3) Being open to correct our errors, (4) Relying on God’s promises daily, (5) Growing spiritually, and (6) Keeping our focus on heaven. We must desire and purpose and plan to remain faithful in our journey with God. “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) Peter gave us this warning, “Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness.” (2 Peter 3:17)
Will you be baptized into Christ to put on Christ so that your sins can be forgiven by His blood? "For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ." (Galatians 3:26-27) Believers contact Christ's saving blood by being baptized into His death. John said, "And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life." (1 John 5:11-12) Are you a faithful member of the church of Christ?
By Charles Box, Walnut Street Church of Christ, 306 Walnut Street,
Greenville, Alabama 36037