We were born again in Christ but never meant to remain infants. God intends for us to grow to maturity as we serve one another in love. But how do we grow in spiritual maturity? Through God’s enduring word that leads us to our glorious Head, Jesus Christ.
From the outset of his public ministry, Jesus shows compassion to many of the people he encounters. Jesus the compassionate healer becomes one of the prominent themes that Luke weaves throughout his gospel account. This is an important part of Jesus’ Messianic mission, and he is the ultimate fulfillment of God’s promise under the old covenant to compassionately shepherd his people.
In His wisdom, Christ builds His unified Church by bestowing a diversity of gifts. He equips each of His people with specific gifts so that we might serve one another and make His glory known. He grants us His power, in a plurality of ways, so that we might advance His purposes in a world desperately in need of His grace.
People often refer to themselves or others as “God-fearing,” perhaps without really thinking about what that means. Jonah 1 shows us what it means to truly fear the Lord, but the example doesn't come to us from the Israelite prophet, Jonah; it comes from a group of pagan sailors, who take seriously God's majesty, his mercy and his mission.
After reviewing all the great doctrines of the faith, the very first exhortation Paul makes to the Ephesians is to preserve the unity of the Church. With practical guidance and biblical footing, he shows how and why to seek this goal-a goal we seek as well through the grace of Jesus Christ.