Friday, 17 January 2020

Resting In The Hope Of Glory

“To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:” (Col 1:27).

The word hope as used in that verse is not referring to wishful expectation. It is not referring to uncertainty and wishfully hoping that something would happen. Rather it is referring to a surety, something that we can be very confident about. The verse is saying that because Christ is in us we have this confidence and surety that we would manifest in glory. Now this is not just referring to the glory we would manifest at his second coming. We would manifest glory both then and now, because Christ is living in us.

“And this is the secret: Christ lives in you. This gives you assurance of sharing his glory.” (Col 1:27).
“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” (Gal 2:20).

Christ living in us, that is the hope of glory. This is not just referring to being born again, rather it is about giving ourselves to live by the life of Christ in us. The glory is in the life of Christ, and as we live by that life and grow into it we are sure to manifest God’s glory. Paul said he had to die to self in order to live by the life of Christ. Yes, it takes sacrifice and it takes faith, for Christ lives in us by faith. The point I am trying to make in this post is that as we strive to live by the life of Christ and grow in that life we can be filled with confidence that we would manifest glory. By strive, I mean rest. Yes, resting in the life of Christ in us.

“For we who have believed enter that rest… Let us therefore strive to enter that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.” (Heb 4:3,11).

We strive with our unbelief, we strive to rest by faith, and as we rest in the Christ who lives in us we can be rest assured that we would manifest his glory in this age. It is by faith that we rest, we cease from the works of the flesh, we cease living our lives, and just rest in the life of Christ in us, allowing that life to find expression. As we do that we look forward to the day that we will burst forth in glory. It is step by step, and with each step we know we are coming closer to the fullness of God expressing itself in glory through our lives.

Yes step by step, each time we yield to the Spirit, each time we forsake our ways and will for His, each time we refuse to live by our lives and instead live by his life, each time we spend pressing in to the fullness of God, it is a step closer to that manifestation of glory. And as the Life in us is allowed to grow it will surely bring us to glory even while on earth. 

Friday, 3 January 2020

Learning To Be Forceful

"And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth." (Rev 5:10).

It is clear that we are to reign with Christ. The Lord wants a queen that would sit on the throne by his side and reign with him. Occupying a place of authority and ruling is never easy. To be able to command obedience from the subject and keep them in order, it requires assertiveness. It takes a lot to wield authority, no matter how small it is, and we are called to wield the greatest authority in all of eternity. It takes boldness, it takes confidence, and it require being decisive. Without all this quality, the throne would be a very frustrating place to be, it would even drive you insane. To ensure that He get the right people that can handle the throne, God had to set up a test.

"That is why the Lord left those nations in place. He did not quickly drive them out or allow Joshua to conquer them all. These are the nations that the Lord left in the land TO TEST those Israelites who had not experienced the wars of Canaan. He did this to teach warfare to generations of Israelites who had no experience in battle." (Jdg 2:23, 3:1&2).

The nation of Israel and their history is a shadow of the things that would happen in the Church. The same way God didn’t allow Joshua to conquer and drive out all their enemies in order to test them, God also prevented Jesus from totally vanquishing the devil so that we can be tested and through that test we would emerge as a people who could handle the throne. Yes, we are face this battle with the devil that we might learn how to wield the authority that Christ won for us. If we don’t know how to wield this authority now, we would never know how to wield it when we get to the throne. In fact, the throne would be burden to us if we do not learn how to wield authority.

The throne is not for timid people who do not even know who they are. Sadly, majority of the body of Christ do not even know who they are, we are still largely timid, and too pliable. We just accept anything that comes our way, we don’t know how to command obedience and be assertive. How can you be bold and confident when you don’t even know what you are doing? Look at us, we lack every quality needed to be able to survive seated on the throne, ruling all of creation. We don't even know how to keep our word, most of us would repent today and then go back into that same sin tomorrow. We don't know how to say, "enough is enough", we are still learning how to stand our ground.

Yes, it requires a strong will to rule, and this present test is meant to install all that into us. If you are just passing through all these challenges and still not developing a strong will, an assertive attitude and a spiritually violent nature, then you are not passing this test at all. If you are not getting better in using the authority in Christ then you are equally not passing the test. Check yourself, and make sure you are getting what you ought to get from this test so that it would not all be a waste. Yes, your Christian life becomes a waste if after passing through all the challenges you still remain timid, ignorant, indecisive and pliable. The battle is meant to make you violent and forceful, you need this quality if you are to sit on the throne. No matter how much God wants to honor you with the throne, it would become a burden if you don't know how to wield authority, so you better start learning now. 

Tuesday, 31 December 2019

Power; Bring All Things To Conformity

Talking about the power of God, we must understand the purpose and the mission of this power. It is not there to satisfy your every whim, it has a will. There was a time I was caught up inside of God in heaven as he sits on the throne, and how could feel how strong His will is. As I remain there I just understood that His power comes from His will. There are things you just know and understand by being with God in stillness. That day I understood that whatever God focuses His will on, He commits all His power to it. To walk in the greatness of God’s power we must come into alignment with the will of God. The question we must find answer to is, “what is the will of God’s power, what purpose is it focused or dedicated to?” When we find answer to this question and come into alignment with the will of this power we would have the power of God at our disposal in its full force.

“For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse” (Rom 1:20).

Everything created was made to reflect certain qualities and attributes of God, but then death came. God is life and death is the separation from life. When Adam sinned he didn’t just died, the whole universe died with him. They became separated from the Life (God), and deviated down a rebellious path. This means they were not properly reflecting God anymore, they were becoming more and more violent and perverse, slowly deviating from their original state. Soon the world became filled with things that are alien to God, things that does not reflect Him at all. There were now things like sickness, death, affliction, pain, suffering, sin, hate and so on. Then God decided to reconcile all things back to Himself, bringing them into conformity to the attributes of Himself.

"We look at this Son and see the God who cannot be seen. We look at this Son and see God's original purpose in everything created. For everything, absolutely everything, above and below, visible and invisible, rank after rank after rank of angels—everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him... but all the broken and dislocated pieces of the universe—people and things, animals and atoms—get properly fixed and fit together in vibrant harmonies, all because of his death, his blood that poured down from the Cross." (Col 1:15-16, 20 MGS).

All things were created to reflect qualities and attributes of God in Christ, for this is their sole purpose of existence, “everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him.” But they lost their purpose after man fell, they all became broken and shattered, incapable of reflecting God properly. God sent Jesus to die in order to fix them together again into the attributes they were created to reflect. The plan was that Jesus would reconcile all things to himself, and bring them to conformity so that they can fit together with the attributes of God.

“And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.” (Col 1:20).
“And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation. To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself,” (2Cor 5:18-19).

He reconciles them to Himself by bringing them into conformity to the attributes or reality in God. This is the mission of Christ, and the power of God which we now have in Christ is focused on accomplishing this mission. So the will of God for this power in us is to bring all things into conformity with the reality in Christ. In Christ there is no sickness, so this power seeks to bring all things into conformity to a reality where sickness does not exist. In Christ there is no sin, pain, suffering, depression, affliction and the likes, so this power in us seeks to bring whatever or whoever has these things into conformity.

To bring that body that is sick into conformity to the reality of healing that exists in Christ; to bring that soul that is depressed and afflicted into the reality of joy and peace which exists in Christ; to bring that heart that hate and envy into conformity to the reality of of love and charity which exists in Christ. This is the mission of the power of God in us, to bring into conformity anything it comes in contact with. So any who becomes possessed by this power would be overtaken with the desire to see a sick person healed and perfectly healthy. He would desire to see any deviation (from the reality in God) come into conformity. 

Saturday, 21 December 2019

Being The Embodiment Of The Kingdom Of Heaven

I have written several posts on this line. One is titled The House Of God, and it is on my Facebook page. Another is titled The Reign Of The Life, the last post of a series I just concluded. In those posts I tried to prove how we are meant to be the manifestation of heaven on earth as the body of Christ. When Jesus established the New Covenant God became one with man, and heaven became one with earth. It is a marriage between heaven and earth, God and man in Christ Jesus. Right now, this reality only exist in Christ and his body. But after the second coming of Jesus this reality would exit all over the universe. When that time comes, the only men that would be in existence are those who are in union with God, and the only earth that would be in existence is that which is completely married to heaven. But right now we have this reality existing only in Christ and his body, not the universe. If you still don't understand you can read the post on the Reign Of The Life, it's on my Facebook page—Centrality and Supremacy of Christ—just search for it on Facebook and you will find it.

Here in this post I would not try to establish what has already been established in a previous post. I only want to demonstrate the possibility of this reality. A few hours ago I was watching a video by Jeff Randell. He was telling how he entered a church meeting and that became really boring, so he told his wife he was going to lit up the whole church with God's presence. And his wife was like, "Please don't", but he did anyway, he just released the presence of God from within him at his seat somewhere at the back of the church. It came out of him so powerfully, the person in front of him fall down, the whole room became so filled with God's presence and everybody could feel it. The preacher began jumping and saying, "Yes, the Holy Ghost just entered into the room". Jeff Randell and his wife laughed. After a while everything resided and got really boring and lifeless again. Then Randell said, "I am going to lit up the room again", so he did it again the second time. Nobody knew it was him, but they could all feel the presence of God come so mightily. The preacher started jumping and saying, "Yes, the Holy Ghost has come into the room again".

Jeff Randell did it one more time, and they almost caught him, but they didn't have enough knowledge to understand that a single believer can just release God's presence from within him, so they never suspect that that's what he was doing seated at the back. As believers, in this flesh of ours lies the marriage between heaven and earth, and we can release the atmosphere of heaven into our environment. We can release that atmosphere of power, love, healing, holiness etc. I have heard of someone releasing the atmosphere of God's love, so that the people present became overwhelmed by this feeling of God's love that they began to cry. I have heard of several people releasing the atmosphere of holiness and the fear of the Lord into the environment, bringing everybody to conviction. Charles G. Finney is said to walk into a bar and just seat down quietly, and before you know it everyone in the bar becomes overwhelmed with the fear of the Lord and are brought to conviction. I heard of a sceptic who came to John Wesley to present some argument, but the moment he got close to Wesley he fell down with terror, overwhelmed with the fear of the Lord and was convicted.

I can go on and on with the story. I have heard enough to convince me that indeed we have the power to release the atmosphere of heaven—the same atmosphere that Isaiah experienced and immediately became convinced that he was a man of filthy lips, the same atmosphere that makes the seraphim keep going, "holy, holy, holy", the same atmosphere that wipe away the tears of everyone (see Re 21:4). This is the atmosphere that Peter released, overshadowing all those who came close to him, healing them of all their sicknesses. This is the atmosphere of heaven, the atmosphere of a reality where there is healing, joy, love, peace, holiness, righteousness and so on. We are the embodiment of the Kingdom of heaven and we have the power to release this atmosphere. And we can release this atmosphere not just in our immediate environment but in other things. We can release it through the phone and we can release it on things that would be passed across.

Aliss Cresswell has a café and people have reported seeing clouds, angels and received healing in that café. She was not doing ministry, just living a supernatural secular life. That is how every Christian life suppose to be, we should be releasing heaven wherever we are. Let people come close to us and see clouds and angels, let them have an encounter with God simply by passing near us or near where we work. Let the tailor sew clothes and anyone that put on that cloth begins to have encounters. Let the hair dresser dress hair and have the customers come back to testify of visions and encounters as a result of that hair. Let people just love to come to our workshop because whenever they come they feel peace and joy, and they become so light as if all the weight of the issues of life is taken off their shoulders. Let people see angels, clouds and light around us. Yes, let's manifest heaven on earth and be a testimony of the union between heaven and earth in Christ. 

Thursday, 19 December 2019

Growing The Life For The Supernatural

In the previous post I shared about growing the life I emphasized growing life in the area of virtues. And one might think that it requires a different principle when it comes to the supernatural, that's why I feel I must write this post. Well, the truth is that it is the same principle. In the previous post I explained the three ways that the life is grown. These three ways still applies for the supernatural. Let me list the three again;
1. Abiding in Christ—living by the indwelling Christ.
2. Getting revelation and learning to fix your eyes on it.
3. Sharing the life (in whatever form) with others.

When you are living by the indwelling Christ you would find yourself being led in ways that would result in supernatural manifestation. Our God is a supernatural God and He does things in supernatural ways, so following Him would involve walking down the path of the supernatural. So as you are living by the indwelling Christ you are not just developing virtues, you are also becoming familiar with the supernatural. As for the second, to manifest the supernatural most times requires having a revelation and learn to fix your eyes so intensely on it that every other thing fades away. When you want to lay hands on a sick person and everything in your head is telling you that you can't get the person healed. Well, just pick up the revelation of the healing power of Christ, focus on that revelation so intensely that it blocks every other thing in your head. If your revelation of this truth is very strong then your heart would immediately become flooded with faith, and that faith is all you need to manifest that healing.

In area of the prophetic the scripture saying, "But we have the mind of Christ (the Messiah) and do hold the thoughts (feelings and purposes) of His heart." (1Cor 2:16). Another scripture says, "But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things." (1John 2:20). How much of this revelation have you gotten? How deep is your revelation in this truth? If you have truly gotten this revelation, then fix your mind eyes on it, continue to meditate over it, and stay still. Then soon you will realize certain information flowing into your mind, or certain pictures would flash, yes that is it. The same goes with seeing the heavens, the scripture says we are seated with God in the heavenly places (Eph 1:6; 3:1-3). Get the revelation of this truth, then fix your eyes on it, seeing yourself seated with God in heaven. Keep your eyes fixed on this truth in your mind with faith in your heart (well, you will naturally have faith if truly you have gotten this revelation). Then your eyes would be open, and the realm of the heavens would manifest before your eyes.

Note that to keep your eyes fixed on something in your mind requires your mind creating an imagination. It's just the nature of the mind, it would automatically create an imagination based on the truth you are trying to fix your eyes on. When you want to fix your mind eyes on the revelation of Christ's healing power, your mind would automatically create an imagination that represents the healing power of Christ to you. Now the problem with seeing into the spirit is that novice don't usually recognize when it has shifted from an imagination to an actual vision. In the area of healing, as you fix your eyes on this image (imagination) of the truth in your mind, and you declare the word by standing on this truth, the healing happens physically, then you could see and know that you have manifested the supernatural. When I want to heal myself is that I just stay still, and imagine Jesus on the cross, with my sickness crucified with him. Then I imagine this healing power pouring out from him unto me, coming in wave after wave. And I just soak myself in that. Then immediately I can feel my body getting healed, temperature returned back to normal, even catar dry immediately. The thing is like magic, it fills me with wonder and awe.

In the area of getting a prophetic word, as you fix your mind on this picture in your mind that you share one mind with God and you have access to what He knows, then you got a word and the person confirm it to be true, you will know that indeed you have manifested the supernatural. But when it comes to seeing heaven and God, how would you know when it has shifted from the image you are fixing your eyes on to an actual vision? Some people tend to be confuse in this area and begin to question if actually they had a vision of heaven or it was still there imagination. And the devil usually use this confuse to get people to just discard this manifestation.

Anyway, the point I am trying to make is that whatever the manifestation may be, it all requires the same principle of getting the revelation and fixing your eyes intensely on it. We manifest the supernatural by fixing our eyes on the revelation of the truth in Christ. And the more you manifest it, the more the life apprehend you in that area. You see, one can have life in one area and not have life in another area. But to be truly mature we must grow in all the fullness of the life, allowing the life to penetrate and grow into every aspect of our lives, including our character (in developing Christian virtue) and our works (in manifestating the supernatural).

There is also the aspect of sharing the life with others. This would involve the desire to share your ability to heal, see, get prophetic word, etc. for the benefit of the community of believers or even the world at large. You can't keep it all to yourself, it would not grow that way. For example I am very good at healing myself, but this ability have not grown the way it ought to because I shy away from healing other people. I only lay hands on people in situations where I am cornered and I didn't have any other choice. If I have been going out healing people, I am sure the ability would have grown very much by now and I would be seeing amazing results. Well, there are so many things I have been keeping to myself, I would have even kept my writings to myself if God didn't force and persuade me to share them.

The more we share the more we grow. If you laid hand on someone and there was no healing, as a result you become discouraged and stop laying hands then that aspect of the life in you will never grow. Hold on to that desire to share, and keep pressing to let it out. Let the river of life flow out of you, and the more you allow it flow the more it would remove every barrier in it path. Yes, the more water is released, the more it pushes away any barriers in it way. In fact, it would keep expanding and extending its banks til it becomes a very big river. We want to have life gushing out of us in such great measure. If you are not seeing results then try to build on the revelation you have, and keep going out. Keep trying to manifest, till you grow into that fullness. As an introvert, I know how difficult it is to get out there and share prophetic word with people, or ask people to allow you lay hands on them, but we must do it if we want to grow in the fullness of the life. There is no other way, we just have to go out.

One thing that would help in going out is doing it in group. Yes, going out alone may be difficult, but if you have a group of people to do it together with then it would be easier. This is one of the purpose of the ecclesia, they are to go out in groups to lay hands on the sick, share prophetic words, allowing every member to participate so that each person would grow into it. Doing it in group would help you break the fear of going out and confronting people. And once that fear have been dealt with, it would become easier to do it in your workplace or school, or wherever you find yourself, whether you are alone or not. This way we would continue to grow in all the fullness of God, sharing the life and manifesting the supernatural everywhere we find ourselves. 

Wednesday, 18 December 2019

Growing The Life In You

This is the continuous of the post I wrote on defining what spiritual growth is. There I explained that spiritual growth is not the growth of spiritual knowledge or the growth of spiritual gifts, rather it is the growth of the spiritual life in us. In that post I mentioned that life is grown on the land (Christ) in the presence of the sun/light (Christ). And what I want to do in this post is to expatiate on that and explain further how this spiritual life can be grown in us. So life is grown by abiding in the land. Everything needed for life to grow is in the land, and as long as you abide in the land life would continue to grow in you. Christ is the land and the source of this spiritual life. The more we abide in him, the more this life would grow in us. This Christ is a person, he lives in you, and you need to be awakened to him, because you cannot abide in him if you are not awakened to him.

Concerning this most people would tell you go read your bible and abide in the word, but we must go deeper than that. We are not a spiritually blind people, we have the ability to see Christ in us, to be awakened to this living person inside of us. I have a course on the “Indwelling Christ/Oneness With God’s Nature”, there I teach Christians to be awakened to this person (Christ) in them, to be able to discern him, abide in him and live by him. Once you are able to do that you will realize that life is growing in you, it is gradually taking over, with it clutches tightening upon you and it laws predominating and governing you. Just like that you are changing. You then realize that certain areas where you were once vulnerable to death, the law of death no long works on you, you realize you can no longer respond to death in these areas. You are now governed by a new law, and you can’t resist this law as it takes hold of you and bend you to his (Christ) will.

“For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.” (Rom 8:2).

Another thing we must learn about growing the life is how to use the light (the revelation of Christ) to cause life to grow within us. It is one thing to have revelation, and it is a whole different thing to learn how to use this light to produce life in your members. First, you must pursue light (the revelation of Christ), and as you get it you must learn to come under that light and abide in it, then the life in you would begin to grow. You come under and abide in the light by fixing your eyes on this revelation of Christ. Developing concentration is one of the most difficult things, humans are easily distracted—it’s the law of death, the death in man makes it difficult for him to focus on important and virtuous things. Man is easily distracted and made to walk down the path of self-destruction. So keeping your eyes fixed on the light involves battling the death in you—that tendency to get distracted and indulge yourself in less important things. But if you can succeed in this, it would cause life to grow in you.

Let say you are face with the temptation to commit a sin, and death is just pulling you into this sin. You must keep your eyes fixed on the revelation that you are dead to sin, in Christ you don’t know how to commit sin, you have lost that ability— you don’t even know how to respond to sin, it is alien to you. If you've truly gotten this revelation and you can fix your eyes on it during this time of temptation, you would just realize that death is losing its grip on you, the urge to do it is fading away—life is replacing death, yes life is growing in your members. And the more you succeed in doing this whenever that temptation comes, the more life takes over that area of your life, until that place is completely filled with life and you can no longer yield to that temptation. In fact, you realize you don’t struggle like before whenever the temptation comes, your default has changed from yielding to death in that area to yielding to life, and whether consciously or unconsciously, you are now living above that sin.

I must also state that if you lack that revelation of being dead to sin and you try to fix your eyes on it, you will undergo great difficult. The deeper the revelation you have of this truth the easier it would become to have victory when you fix yours eyes on it. If this truth is only an idea in your head, then I am sorry you would undergo difficulty. But if you have gotten so deep in the revelation of this truth, that whenever you think about the truth that you are dead to sin in Christ, it sparks something in you, you become overwhelmed with this feeling of brokenness, this feeling of handicap and emptiness, then it would become easier to resist death and cause life to grow. This is why pursuing revelation is important, it is not enough to have head knowledge, a mere idea in your head. You must go deep enough to the extent that it sparks something in you whenever you think about it.

The final thing that I would mention about growing the life in you is that life must be allowed to flow and be shared otherwise its growth would be stunted. Let me illustrate it to you in the natural. If the plant refuses animals from eating its fruits and leafs then these animals would not excrete and produce manure that makes the land more fertile so that plant and draw more life from it. So you can see the circle and the flow of life. The plant shares its leafs and fruits with the animals so that they can eat, digest and excrete, hereby fertilizing the soil, making it richer so that the plant would then use to produce life. Spiritual life is life a river, it must be allowed to flow from one person to another, and if you stop the flow of that life in you then your spiritual growth would be stunted. So to grow the life in you, you must seek for an avenue that allows life to be released from the inside of you towards others. This is why every believer needs the ecclesia.

The ecclesia is a meeting where believers gather together to share life among each other, allowing life to flow from one person to another, hereby causing the life in each individual to grow exponentially. This would then lead to the full maturity of the whole body. We must understand that each member of the body is a unique flavor of Christ, and when you share the life you have with a member of the body, the moment it gets into that member, the life becomes infused with that unique flavor that the member represents. Then this member pass out this richer life to another member who would then infuse it with his our flavor, passing it again to another member. As it continues to go round this life is getting richer and richer with different flavors, and then it returns back to you so rich and edifying, causing you to grow so beautifully in the riches of Christ.

Another wonderful thing about sharing the life is that the more life you share, the more it would flow from the source (Christ) into you. In scripture we learn of a river of living waters, flowing out of the throne of God. This river flows into us, and as we release this living water, more would flow from the source. When you have a word of knowledge and you walk up to the person, open your mouth and start speaking. As you speak a word becomes a sentence, and then a sentence becomes a whole chapter. Before you know it you have told the person the whole story of his life. And all of these started by just releasing that single word that you had, that word that made no sense to you, you only opened your mouth out of obedience. The same goes with teaching and sharing the word.

When you receive a rhema as you study scripture, sometimes you realize that as you are sharing that rhema with someone more begins to come. The more you share the more you receive from the Spirit. I have discovered that I learn more when I am writing or teaching, and many also have shared the same experience. The life is like a river, the more you let it out, the more life you receive. And imagine how much blessings it would be if you have a community where you come together to share life. You share things you learned while reading the Bible, things you received while fellowshipping with the Spirit, experiences you have in your private time with God or in your relationship with Him generally. When you gather together to share these things you will begin to get more and more from God and from that fellowship with the believers, as a result you are becoming fuller and fuller with the life.

The lack of ecclesia in the body of Christ today is one of the major cause of the immaturity and the stunted growth of the body of Christ. We have a long way to grow, and the way we are practicing Christianity is not helping at all. Anyway, the Lord is in control, He has determined to have a mature group of believers emerge to demonstrate His fullness and glory. The question is, do you desperately want to be one of those? Do you want to grow to the extent that the fullness and glory of God is manifested through you, causing your life to become the manifestation of heaven on earth?

Sunday, 15 December 2019

What Is Spiritual Growth

Although I have mentioned this in several of my posts, I still feel I should dedicate a special article to properly explain. This is because there are so much misunderstanding bound up around this. First of all we are not talking about just any spiritual growth but the Christian spiritual growth. So how can you say a Christian is growing spiritually, is it by the gifts or powers he displays, or just the maturity of character?

"... comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." (1Cor 2:13-14).

Spiritual things are spiritually discern. You cannot make conclusions on spiritual things just by observing with your carnal faculties. If you are looking to see gifts, spiritual babies also have gifts of the Spirit, and that does not mean they are mature. If you are looking for character, there are atheists or people of other religion that have good morals or character, and these things are not of any spiritual origin, so they cannot be called spiritual growth. We are looking for something that is Christian and spiritual. And everything Christian springs out from Christ.

So the Christian spiritual growth must be a spiritual thing that springs out from Christ—it must be utterly and wholly Christ. Well, one thing I have learnt about the spiritual in Christ is that it comes behind its shadow. Yes, first comes the shadow, then the reality. God made it that way so we can understand the spiritual reality from its shadow.

"For these rules are only shadows of the reality yet to come. And Christ himself is that reality." (Col 2:17).
"But it is not the spiritual that appears first but the natural, and then the spiritual." (1Cor 15:46).

First comes the shadows to tell us about the coming reality—a reality that is utterly Christ, constituting of nothing but Christ. The shadow is the natural, and the reality is the spiritual. So in the natural world what is growth? What determines growth? Is a child considered mature by the measure of gift he has? Would you call a baby 'a man' because he has a car or some expensive property? No, growth is not determined by gifts. There is no amount of gift you give a baby that would turn him into a fully grown man.

What about knowledge? Do you believe you can teach a child so much knowledge that he would just increase in size and height, turning into a full fleshed grown man? Yet this is the mentality many Christians carry today. They believe if they can just study enough scripture and get enough rhema then they are now mature. That is what we do, we take a man through Bible school and then declare him mature enough to be a pasture and lead the immature. This is why we often end up having the immature leading the immature.

When babies are leading babies, all you would have is child play, and then they say this child play is practicing Christianity. Yes, many of what we call Christianity today is child play—babies leading babies, and becoming so caught up in their child play that they believe that is adult life. Oh, when shall we see fully matured Christianity—mature in all the fullness of God, mature in God's full thoughts, His perfect will, His original plan?

Growth is determined by life. Yes, the life you get from eating. The food you eat contains life—life that develops in the presence of the sun through photosynthesis. This life results to a full grown plant with fruits filled with life. Then you eat this fruits or plant and draw from the life that is in it, that life is added to your life causing you to grow in life. Yes, growing in life, that is what growth is. Even if it is animal you eat, this animal had drawn life from the plant which drew life from the land in the presence of the sun, and now there is enough life in this animal to sustain you, adding to the life in you and causing you to grow.

"For in him we live and move and exist." (Acts 17:28).
"In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shine" (John 1:4-5).

We live, move and exit in Christ, he is our land, and at the same time he is the light that shines, a light that is filled with life. So on this land (Christ) and in the presence of this sun (Christ), life grows, and this growth of life is what is called spiritual growth. Yes, it is the growth of a spiritual life in us as Christians. Not the growth of spiritual knowledge, or spiritual gifts. Just as the growth of natural gifts and natural knowledge is not equated to bodily growth.

The baby cannot comprehend the knowledge you are given him, or drive the car in his possession, he has not developed the faculties to do that. This is why feeding Christians with just knowledge alone would not help them. Sure they would rejoice and be excited about the knowledge, but it is not helping them. They will be excited about having a car but that car would cause them an accident if their legs cannot reach the breaks properly, and their heads is not above the stirring. Spiritual gifts have destroyed a lot of people, causing them to be filled with pride and become arrogant, hereby constructing their self-destruction.

We must learn the issue of life. We must learn how to draw life from this land, how to grow this life in the presence of the sun. It is not enough to have light, so many are pursuing light without learning how to use this light to develop life in their members. We must learn to use this light we are getting to produce life in us. There is a way you can come under light and begin to cause life to grow in you, many Christians do not know how to consciously do this. They can only do it by mistake, maybe through trial-and-error, or through a myriad of activities hoping that one of them will result in the production of life in them.

We really do not know what we are doing, we do not understand this process. Look at the natural world for example, look at how much we've achieved as a result of scientists paying enough attention to nature to understand its process and learn to control this process for the benefit of humankind. Yes, when we understand how life is produced in the presence of the light then we can consciously facilitate this process. Hereby, causing speedy growth, so that we can attain the fullness of God and walk in His glory before our time on earth is over, for the Lord wants His glory manifested in this age through His body. In fact, we need to understand everything about life, we must dive into a deep study of the life if we truly want to make progress just as we see in the natural world today.