Is it possible to truly follow Christ and not change? If we are to grow as Christians that would include changes in our lives. It’s completely contrary to nature to grow without change. A normal expectation is for all living things to reach a point of maturity. As an example a mature fruit tree produces fruit. A mature disciple of Jesus will produce more disciples. The greatest failure of any local church congregation is the failure to produce mature Christians. This seems to be a plague on the current Western culture church.
A big part of the problem many church congregations face is the mistaken idea that we must conform to be in unity. Unity is not the same as conformity. Unity is clearly seen in the beauty of diversity. We should readily accept that other believers are going to have a different worship style than our own. The unity of the Church should be clearly evidenced in the teaching of and adherence to the Holy Bible. Twisting scripture, or ignoring part of it completely, in order to conform to a “new” culture is destructive heresy.
God did not leave us to figure out how to become mature all on our own. He gave the Church certain ministry gifts as is recorded in Ephesians 4:11. These purpose of these gifts are clearly stated in 4:12.
Ephesians 4:11-13 And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, 13 till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ;
Marks of mature conduct
- Prepared for works of ministry
- Edifying the body of Christ, which is providing moral or intellectual instruction.
- Reaching unity of faith
- Growing in knowledge of the Son of God
The opposite of maturity is immaturity.
Ephesians 4:14 NKJV that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting,
The immature believer is easily swayed by false doctrine and deceived by clever lies of greedy and selfish teachers. The same as a child is not aware of their own gullibility an immature believer is not aware of theirs. It requires patient instruction from mature believers to guide young Christians.
Rev. Burt Schwab