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2018-10-16    

屬靈成長的驗證

粵語 國語

第16天


讀經:   

約翰壹書二章12至14節

12小子們哪,我寫信給你們,因為你們的罪藉著主名得了赦免。

13父老阿,我寫信給你們,因為你們認識那從起初原有的。少年人哪,我寫信給你們,因為你們勝了那惡者。小子們哪,我曾寫信給你們,因為你們認識父。

14父老阿,我曾寫信給你們,因為,你們認識那從起初原有的。少年人哪,我曾寫信給你們;因為,你們剛強,神的道常存在你們心裡;你們也勝了那惡者。

約翰分別規勸不同年齡組別的人,是十分正常的。在每個家庭裡面,都會有這幾類年齡組別的人,他們代表了不同的成長階段。在任何的基督徒群體,我們同樣找到這幾個年齡組別的人:有長輩,有成年人,也有少年人。

童年是成長和學習的階段。對為人父母者而言,還有甚麼事情比發現自己的兒女不能成長,或沒有長進來得更痛心呢?我們的天父豈不是一樣?我們天父會否因為我們的基督徒生命毫無長進,因而感到很傷心呢?神期望祂的兒女不斷在靈命上成長。第12 節對小孩子說的話,正提到福音的第一項真理,就是罪得赦免;但我們必須緊記,這只是進入屬靈生命的開始。

第13至14節是對少年人的規勸。少年人的其中一個特徵,就是活力充沛。基督徒的活力是源自神所賜予的能力,以及神話語的餵養。我們若想成為一個強健的基督徒,就必須勤讀聖經,而且,不僅是讀,還要讓聖經的話語教導我們、引領我們,為我們的信仰提供穩固的基礎。

第13至14節所指的父老是誰呢?他們是指到成熟的人──至少是理應是成熟的人。約翰說他們已認識基督,這點是很重要的。一個年齡到達成年階段的人,並不一定成熟。有些人信主已久,卻沒有在基督裡有明顯的成長。他們的表現仿如被寵壞的小孩,永遠長不大。他們不單為自己製造麻煩,還為教會裡的其他信徒帶來困擾。他們必須按照神的心意成長。當保羅自言他最渴望的事,就是愈來愈像基督的時候,這就正顯示他已參透成長的祕訣。

在神的家中,你是屬於哪個年齡組別呢?剛剛開始學習成長的小孩?開始藉著基督找到得力祕訣的少年信徒?已懂得在神的話語中與主同行的成熟基督徒?你究竟是屬於哪一個組別呢?

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TESTS OF OUR SPIRITUAL GROWTH
Day 16


Bible Reading:   

1 John 2:12-14

12 I write to you, little children,Because your sins are forgiven you for His name’s sake.

13 I write to you, fathers,Because you have known Him who is from the beginning.I write to you, young men,Because you have overcome the wicked one.I write to you, little children,Because you have known the Father.

14 I have written to you, fathers,Because you have known Him who is from the beginning.I have written to you, young men,Because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you,And you have overcome the wicked one.

TESTS OF OUR SPIRITUAL GROWTH

It is no accident that John addresses these various groups. In any family situation there are these same age groups, which are just different stages of growth. In any group of Christians we will find the same. Some have grown. Some are still growing. Some haven't even started to grow.

Childhood is the age of growth, and of learning. Is there any greater heartbreak to parents than to have a child who doesn't grow, who doesn't develop? Would that be true for God also? Does our heavenly Father sometimes look at us and wonder why we haven't progressed in our Christian life as he wants us to? What God is looking for is spiritual maturity. The first fact of the gospel is in verse 12, where children are mentioned. That is forgiveness, but remember that is only the beginning of our spiritual life.

In verses 13 and 14, John speaks of young men. One characteristic of young men is their strength. A Christian is not strong in his own power, but in the strength that has come to him through God and his Word. If we want to be stronger Christians, we will have to spend time in the Word of God, not just learning about it but letting it speak to us, letting it guide our lives and giving us a strong foundation for our faith.

Who are the fathers of verses 13 and 14? They are the ones closest to maturity-or they should be. John says of them 'you have known Christ'. Isn't that a wonderful description? Age doesn't always mean maturity, does it? Some people have known Christ for a long time but it is very obvious that they haven't grown in Christ. They still act like spoiled immature children. They cause problems for themselves and for everyone else in their church. They need to grow as God has planned for us all. Paul knew the secret of this when he said his one ambition was to know more and more of Christ.

Where are you today in God's family? A child that is beginning to learn and grow? A Christian who has begun to find the secret of strength through Christ? A more mature Christian who knows what it is to walk with Christ in the light of his Word. Where are you today?

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