Growth: Jesus Grew
Luke 2:52, “And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.”
When we talk about the man Jesus was, and the need for we as Christians to be conformed to His image (Romans 8:29), we usually focus on the three years of His life that revolved around His ministry and death. But we might do well to look at the early years of His life and development, His growth. He, not unlike our spiritual journey, started somewhere and became the man that we love, admire, and follow.
Just how did Jesus grow? He grew…
Intellectually: “… in wisdom.” I believe that a good spiritual foundation for growth is bolstered by a mind that continues to develop and remain active. One should be well read, study diligently to apply common sense, rational, and sound logic. This will help us to reason (Isaiah 1:18) and teach others (Acts 17:2). It will help us to be able to handle accurately the Word of God (2 Timothy 2:15).
Physically: “… in stature.” Yes Jesus grew physically as we would expect a human being to do. My point here is that we need to take care of ourselves physically while we are here on earth. I know as Christians we are all looking forward to that day when we will be glorified in Christ. But every day that we are allowed to live here on planet earth we have an opportunity to glorify God, to teach others, to love and support the church, and to leave a lasting impression of Christ upon everyone and everything we touch.
Spiritually: “… in favor with God.” This ought to be our greatest endeavor. Ultimately it doesn’t matter what anyone else but God thinks. It is Him we ought to please (Colossians 1:10; 1 Thessalonians 4:1). It should be our greatest desire to one day hear the Father of our souls say to us, “Well done, good and faithful servant…” (Matthew 25:21).
Socially: “… in favor with men.” While it is true that Jesus became a man known to not care what other men thought or taught (Mark 12:14) but what this point stresses is that many who knew Him respected him, even if they disagreed with Him. And because of the kind of man He was He was able to reach souls and people would listen to what He had to say. Paul said he became all things to all men that he might be able to save some (1 Corinthians 9:22).
Just like Samuel the prophet (1 Samuel 2:26) and our Lord, we too need to keep growing. Growing more and more each day into the image of the Son of God. How’s your growth?