How A Child of God Grows

After a person is born again, is born of the Spirit, they are a child of God. Just as a baby needs to grow into childhood and then adulthood, Christians need to grow spiritually. Being born is just the first step into the wonderful journey to eternity.

Podcast 20 Transcript

(This is a computer generated transcript of this podcast. This is NOT a typed transcript and it has not been edited. Expect grammatical and syntactical errors.)

Hello and good day. This is B. R. Maul and you are listening to the podcast Living God’s Way in an Ungodly World. Welcome, and it’s so good to have you with me today. We have been talking quite a bit about the importance of reading God’s word daily and praying to him daily. And why is that? Because the Lord wants a relationship with you. He’s not looking for another follower. No. He wants a relationship. So if you are born again, you are a child of God. And that’s only the beginning because being born again is being born spiritually. Now we take a look at when we are born, physically a baby comes into this world. And when the baby is born, is that where everything stops?

No, not at all. In fact, that’s just the beginning and anybody who’s ever has a child knows that life certainly changes when we have a child. Because that child is relied upon us. And in time that child, as that child grows and can do more on his own, starts to walk, starts to eat on his own, starts to play on his own.

And before you know what the child is reading and going to school and growing up. But in that process, parents, we don’t just let the baby do everything on his or her own. No, we nourish the baby. We guide the baby as the baby becomes a child and we guide the child and we love the child. We take care of the child, and that is what God wants to do with you.

So once we are born again, once a person has confessed with their mouth, the Lord Jesus and in their heart know for certain that the Lord has raised him from the dead, they’re born again, that you can see Romans 10: 9-10. But as it’s the responsibility of a child to also reciprocate with the parents, we also need to reciprocate with our Heavenly Father.

And what do I ne mean by reciprocate? A baby naturally cries out. If they’re uncomfortable, if they’re hungry, whatever it might be, they communicate the fact. And when they go from baby to toddler to child, they learn how to communicate more efficient. So instead of just start crying, hopefully a child can go to mom or dad and say, I’m hungry.

That’s communicating seems simple, right? Well, it is because it comes naturally. However, when it comes to spiritual things, that doesn’t come so natural, cuz keep in mind, we are born spiritually dead. And if a person isn’t born again, they remain spiritually dead their whole life. So once we are born again, it’s important that we communicate with God, our father, our needs.

It’s important we communicate our concerns, our desires, our wishes, our Thanksgiving. It’s important that we do that, and that takes effort. It takes even getting used to it. The best way to walk with our father, the best way to grow spiritually so we can leave infancy as a child of God and become Christians who are stronger and no longer need to drink just milk.

But we can eat the meat of the gospel of God’s word and grow stronger and stronger. And how important is that? Wow. In today’s time. Very important. With every generation, it truly gets more and more important. Why? Because it becomes more difficult just in the way our society as a whole sees and approaches God. It wasn’t long ago that in the United States it was a good thing to be a Christian. It was a good thing to go to church and on a healthy level it was expected. You go to church, you worship with the community that you live with. But now things have changed and God is kicked out of our legal system.

God has been kicked out of our educational system and since our view and approach on God as a society as a whole has changed, it takes greater effort to walk with him because we get so much flack. We get people saying, oh, come on, you’re wasting your time. That’s old stuff that no longer pertains or whatever.

And so to truly get to know Yahweh, a person needs to set aside what the world is saying. Ignore that as best they can. And believe me, it can be challenging, especially when you first start doing it, and then eventually get to the point where it is the most important thing to you. I want to help you with that today.

And so we’re gonna be in Psalm 119. Please open up your Bible to Psalm 119: 1-2. And for those of you who know your Bible quite well, you know that Psalm 119 is the longest chapter in the Bible. I assure you, just because I’m starting out in verse one doesn’t mean we’re going through the entire thing.

I have picked out some key verses that really help us to understand what it looks like to have a relationship with God, what it pertains and what the effort looks like, because remember, God, he’s not a God that is distant. He didn’t create the world and then walk away from it and said, okay, I’ll see some of you later.

No, he is here with us. He is active and he wishes that nobody go to hell. Hell was after all designed for Satan and the angels that followed Satan. That fell. So in 119, first one it reads. Blessed are the undefiled in the way who walk in the law of the Lord. Okay, I’ll stop right there. Blessed are the undefiled in the way.

What’s the way? The way also means path or the road and the way would be the road of life. And in our societies, that’s pretty common to talk about life as a journey, life being on a road, it helps us to envision that there is traveling, that there is effort involved, and that there is a direction. So blessed are the undefiled in the way.

Why are they undefiled? The next line…who walk in the law of the Lord. That is why they are undefiled. They are righteous. They are clean. Verse two, blessed are those who keep his testimonies, who seek him. That’s God with the whole heart. Now, blessed can also be interpreted as happy, pretty simple. Happy are the undefiled in the way.

Happy are those who keep his testimonies, who keep to his law. And the second line of verse two is very important, who seek him with the whole heart. We see this word seek quite often, especially in Proverbs. Solomon makes it very clear that a relationship with the Lord is one that you seek because God wants those who want him. He has given you beloved one thing that you can give back and that is love. There’s nothing else that we can offer. God. We may think we do, and at times we all get kind of caught up in that, Hey, look at me, I’m volunteering, or Hey, look at me. I’m doing this, I’m doing that. Or Boy, am I nice or whatever.

Sometimes we get patting ourselves in the back a little too much. None of that impresses God. I mean, we please God. I don’t want to get into that. I guess that’s a rabbit hole there is displeasing him and pleasing him, but that’s not the same as impressing him. So we seek him because we want to give him our love.

He loves us. We just need to reciprocate. That one needs to decide, am I going to love God and give myself to him, or am I gonna love myself? But either way, you have that love to give verse seven. I will praise you. That’s God. I will praise you with uprightness of heart. When I learn the righteous judgments to help better understand this line, we can kind of flip flop that.

I’ll read the second part first. When I learn your righteous judgments, I will praise you with uprightness of heart. We can’t praise him with uprightness of heart if we don’t learn. So the key word there in verse seven is learn when I learn, not when you give me the knowledge, not when you just instantly change my heart, but when I learn you’re righteous judgements.

Because as we read his word, as we read the Bible and we turn to him and we meditate on the Bible, when we pray to him. He sanctifies us. That’s the process of sanctification. A quick reminder that when somebody is born again and they become a follower of Jesus, they are instantly justified. It’s an instant action and it is one and done.

Once justified, always justified. And that is the price. Our sin, debt, we are justified. Now the next is an ongoing step, and that’s sanctification. Sanctification is a lifelong process. It doesn’t end until our life ends. And sanctification is the Holy Spirit working in us to make us more like our savior, Jesus Christ.

And that is what takes effort, because that’s that relationship part. And it truly is beautiful and amazing that God wants a relationship with us. That learning process, that sanctification that happens as we continue to grow and walk with him, makes that relationship with him all the more stronger. I think that’s why he designed it that way.

We don’t instantly become like his beloved son, Jesus Christ, on this side of eternity. We just don’t. But that’s the process of making us stronger. Next verse is nine verses 9, 10 and 11. How can a young man cleanse his way? I’ll stop there because that may sound like a rhetorical question or one that just can’t be answered because in our world, we’re told that we can’t be that way.

We can’t be clean. It breaks my heart that so many denominations and churches today that the preachers are out there telling people that, yes, you are just worms. You are nothing. You are fodder. And that’s just the way we, we always will be until we die. That is so false. When we are born again and our sin debt is paid, our heavenly father no longer sees us. He sees the righteousness of Jesus Christ, and so Christians, we need to stop walking around and acting like we are just filthy mud, filthy rags, that God the father just can’t stand. Now our good works compared to that, but that’s because we can’t work ourself into heaven and the evil that we did before we were born again.

Oh yes. Very filthy. But when we are born again, we become a new person. Not on the outside, no, nothing changed on the outside, but on the inside. There is an instant change. Whether a person recognizes it or not right away often depends on their situation, on their environment, their lifestyle. Somebody who lived wicked of a lifestyle once born again will notice it probably.

A lot quicker than somebody who didn’t openly live a wicked lifestyle. I don’t know how many times people once born again, and they’ll look back at that and say, yeah, I used to go out drinking, and that was what I would consider fun. And then I just, I was out there and there’s Sunday I start to realize something.

No, this just isn’t, that’s not right. And I feel icky about it. Well, that’s the change that starts to take place with the Holy Spirit. Okay, so verse nine, how can a young man cleanse his way? It answers it by taking heed according to your word. Hey, there it is. Keep on reading God’s word. Verse 10 with my whole heart.

Well, there’s that whole heart again. I have sought you. Oh, sought past tense of seek. Isn’t that something? Oh, let me not wander from your commandments, and that can happen. We can avoid that by reading God’s word. When a Christian stops reading God’s word, wandering from his commandments becomes more and more likely, uh, with every passing day that his book isn’t opened, that God isn’t acknowledged in modern time.

We call that backsliding a Christian backslides. And backsliding is not losing your salvation. Backsliding is just that. You slide back so you lose some ground there. You start maybe trying some of the old sin again, trying to hang around old friends that are not born again, and they too continue to live a sinful life and trying to fit in.

There’s a lot of different ways we backslide, but that’s what happens. So how can a young person cleanse their way by taking heed according to your word. And then he says, with my whole heart, and we hear that a lot when we read God’s word and when we walk with him, when we live our life, we need to give him our whole heart.

A relationship with God isn’t I’m Well, I’m going to give you half of my heart. I still want to give the other half of my heart to the world. I wanna be able to still do this stuff over here, which I know you don’t like, but I will still read your word and I’ll pray to you. So I’m gonna give you part of my heart.

In fact, I might even give you a little more. I’ll give you 60% in the world, 40%, beloved. It doesn’t work that way. We can’t do that. So when you open his word and you’re reading his word, give attention to his word. And it will take time, but put the world to the side. We live in this world, so we as Christians are still in this world, but we’re no longer of this world, but we still have tasks to do, jobs to do.

We still have to live, right? But those tasks we put to the side as well. Maybe I gotta mow my yard. Well, before being born again, I would spend four hours manicuring my yard. Well, okay, that can change. Maybe I don’t manicure it as much, especially if I need to make time to read God’s word. And that’s just one example, just throwing that out there randomly.

And then verse 11, this is one of my favorites. Psalm 119:11, your word I have hidden in my heart that I might not sin against you. That’s beautiful. When we read God’s word and we. Spend time with the Lord, we start putting that into our heart and the fastest way of putting into our heart is memorize some verses, whether it’s from sermons I listen to, or while I’m, I’m reading God’s word.

When a verse stands out, it stands out for a reason. I truly believe that cuz that’s the Holy Spirit sanctifying me. And so I’ll write that verse down and either meditate on it for a while or memorize it. And the more verses that you memorize, the more you have that you can carry with you all the time.

I’m gonna go to verse 15 and 16. I will meditate on your precepts and contemplate your ways. Precepts is another word for commands. I will delight myself in your statutes. I will not forget your word. Another way to not forget his word is to memorize, but also by reading it on a regular basis. Let’s look at a few keyword words in 15 and 16.

I will meditate. On your precepts. On your commands, meditate. Well, there’s another action word for us to meditate on. Something is purposefully taking the time and thinking about it, asking questions about it. How does that apply to me, Lord? Or what does he mean by that? And we read it over a few times. I find that if I read a verse and I emphasize a different word each time I read it, it helps me to sort out what it is the Lord is trying to communicate with me through his word, if that makes sense.

So for example, with 15, if I were to put that to practice, I could say, I will meditate on your precepts. I will meditate on your precepts. I will meditate on your precepts. I will meditate on your precepts. I will meditate on your precepts. I will meditate on your precepts. So there’s a slight different angle and it brings just a little different meaning depending on what word you emphasize, and that’s meditating.

So meditate is a big one. Contemplate. Again, another form of meditation. I will contemplate your ways. So how God does things, the Bible reveals God to us who He is. I mean, the whole Bible is about God. It’s, and it’s about Jesus Christ. It’s not about us. I mean, I’ve heard it been told that, uh, the Bible is the love letter to us from God.

I don’t think so. It definitely shows his love for us, but it’s the knowledge of him and Jesus and in return, he’s loving us very much so. But it’s not about us. I am not the center of the Bible. You are not the center of the Bible. Jesus Christ is the center of this Bible. It is the book about him, but we are included.

And boy, am I thankful for that. Verse 16, another word is delight. The Hebrew is and it means to look upon, to look upon. I will delight myself in your statutes, so I will look upon it, which of course it means we’ll be memorizing it and reading it. We never stop reading it. It’s not like I read the Bible.

Woo, I’m done. No. I don’t know how many passages I have gone to in the past and I read it and it speaks to me during a season of my life, or depending on what’s going on, certain events in my life, it speaks to me one way, but then it speaks to me another. Was something else going on in my life, and that’s what’s so beautiful and so wonderful about God’s word.

Let’s skip way over to 46, 46, 47 and 48. 46 reads, I will speak of your testimonies also before Kings and will not be ashamed, and I will delight myself. In your commandments, there’s that word delight again, which I love. My hands also, I will lift up to your commandments, which I love, and I will meditate on your statutes, so there’s some more of the words that we recognize.

Meditate again. All right, so let’s break that down. I will speak of your testimonies also before Kings and will not be ashamed. That’s verse 46. Well, that’s pretty important because speaking before Kings, or we could look at it speaking before those in power, speaking before those who have large influences in our lives.

Perhaps a boss, a business partner, our spouse, our children, people who have not necessarily just authority, but a very heavy impact on our life. I will speak of your testimonies also before kings and will not be ashamed cuz we are not to be ashamed of the gospel. Yes, that becomes more challenging because again, the world today wants less and less to do with God and even more so Jesus Christ.

And so speaking about Jesus Christ, even saying his name, start talking and say the word Jesus and start talking about Jesus in a, in a room. And there’s a good chance that room will clear out or thin out at any rate, 47. And I will delight myself in your commandments. And we just said that delight in Hebrew means to look upon, which I love.

And he says that twice, one in 47. Which I love. And then in 48 my hands also, I will lift up to your commandments, which I love, and I will meditate on your statutes. My hands also, I will lift up to your commandments. I think of when worshiping him, you know, being brought up in a Lutheran church, we didn’t lift up our hands, we.

We didn’t show, you know, we didn’t, we didn’t show any excitement. Uh, when it comes to worshiping the first time, I witnessed people who were truly joyful in their worship to the Lord and raising their hands to him. And I think of that and just how powerful that is, that it doesn’t matter who’s looking upon you.

You just love the Lord and he’s your audience of one to worship him. So meditating and delighting, these are important words because it means that a Christian is being purposefully active in reading God’s word, actually setting time aside. And yes, I know that that means when we set a time for something, obviously we’re not doing something else.

If I choose to watch a movie, Well, think of all the things I could be doing in place of that two hours sitting there watching a movie. So I am dedicating myself that time of two hours to that movie. Well, it’s the same thing with God’s word. I hear it all the time. And honestly, I say to you right now, I am sick and tired of hearing the excuse of I’m too busy.

I’m too busy to read the Bible. I’m too, I’m too busy to get together on a weekly basis. That’s asking way too much. I’m too busy, I’m too busy. No one’s too busy. We all have 24 hours in a day. If people were honest to others and they were honest to themself, they would say, I don’t want to, cuz that’s what it is.

I don’t want to, well, Bruce, you sound pretty harsh. I can hear it already. I can hear some of you as you’re listening to this, but it’s true. It is true. I used an example one time and a sermon of mine. I was preaching about how easy it is to not read God’s word, to not get together with brothers and sisters in Christ and to grow with one another using the excuse.

I just don’t have the time. I’m too busy. And I said to those I was preaching to. Beloved, if I were to send you an invitation right here and now to come over to my place, my wife and I, we have steaks and hamburgers on the grill. We’ve got all kinds of baked goods, all kinds of fun activities to do, boat rides, games to play in the yard, and on top of that, for everybody who comes and stays for at least one hour, we have a thousand dollars in cash that we are going to give you.

There wouldn’t be one person who wouldn’t show up. There wouldn’t be, unless there was something really difficult to get out of, because most people, even a thousand dollars, even if you had to work, I just won’t go to work that day, whatever. Gee, a fun day of just eating some grilled food and going boating, maybe some tubing, some swimming, some yard games, and all this fun stuff, and I get a thousand dollars and I only have to be there at least an hour.

I’m there. See how quick we can change that. That sure does. Gun down the old, I’m too busy. It’s because you don’t want to, so if you’re still the one who’s saying that, stop saying, I’m too busy. And just start being honest with yourself and those and say, I don’t want to. Okay. Moving on to, let’s go over to 79 verse 79 and 80. 79 reads, let those who fear you turn to me. Those who know your testimonies. Let my heart be blameless regarding your statutes that I may not be ashamed. Hmm. That’s somebody who I get the impression has certainly been growing in their walk with the Lord, have spiritually become stronger. Spiritually more confident in God’s word.

Let those who fear you turn to me. The Hebrew word for fear is yahk. Yahk sounds close to Yahweh, but that’s not at all the way it’s spelled, and it means morally reverent. Morally reverent. So being afraid, having some fear with reverence to the Lord. So when we read 79, keep that in mind. Let those who fear you turn to me.

Those who know your testimonies. These are those who are believers, followers of God, or they’re seriously looking into it and they really want to know more. And 80, let my heart be blameless regarding your statutes. So knowing them, understanding them. Teaching them to others the right way, not wanting to mislead, not wanting to give the wrong message about what God is saying in his word.

And the last part of 80 that I may not be ashamed cuz who wants to teach God’s word and then realize I’m teaching the wrong thing. So to get to the point where you’re walking with the Lord long and enough and are confident enough that when others turn to you and ask you questions about God’s word with confidence, you can answer them.

That’s very important. Very important and such a, a great place to be in your walk with the Lord. We all want to get to that point where we are more confident cuz we understand more and more of what God is saying and the only way that comes beloved, is to read God’s word. You can go to a seminary, you can take online classes, you can read all kinds of books about in interpreting and understanding God’s word, but all of that is not the actual source go directly to his word.

Now, it’s one thing where if there’s a certain area that you’re studying, We can take the book of Revelations, for example. Very complex. I get it. It’s cryptic in many ways, and so is one thing to go and do some research about what others who have spent more time than us say about Revelation. But after that, you must go back to God’s word, read it, ask the Lord for guidance, and see if it really does apply.

Because I have seen even those who are scholars, that’s not what the Bible reads. Well, Bruce, how do you know that you’re reading it right? Well, that’s a good question. But I’m confident because the Holy Spirit’s guiding me. I’m not relying on my education. I’m not relying on a whole group of people sitting around and deciding this is what that means, and just agreeing with whichever one sounds the best or most impressive.

No, the Holy Spirit’s leading me and the Holy Spirit will lead you. And I assure you, not every scholar of the Bible, not every theologian out there is born again. And so we could be reading their work, whether it’s a book or an article or whatever, listening to ’em on YouTube or whatever it is, and they don’t have the Holy Spirit’s interpretation of it, and I don’t want that.

So I will always go back to God’s word and I beg of you to do the same thing, develop that habit right away. Verse 93, and there’s only a few more we’re gonna go through. I will never forget your precepts for by them. You have given me life. Wow. That is beautiful because yes, that is how we obtain life is through his word for someone to be born again and then stop.

And never open God’s word. Never grow. And I know plenty of Christians who are miserable. And that’s usually because what is going on there is a brother or sister in Christ is still trying to fit into the world. They know they have their salvation and their heart. They love the Lord, and they even thirst to know more, but then they don’t.

They don’t follow through with it. I heard it once said, and I believe it was Adrian Rogers, that the most miserable person on Earth is not an unbeliever. It is a believer who is not in the will of their father. That is so true. Beloved eyewitness to that. Myself, having gone through that, trying so hard to fit into the world, even though I, I know, and at that time I knew in my heart Jesus so loves me.

That gave me great, great comfort knowing, but taking that knowledge into places where there was just sin, it doesn’t go well because someone who is not born again, they can sin and not feel bad about it. They have ignored the Holy Spirit for so long that they’re okay with it. But when a born again believer sins, and especially intentionally just going out, trying to do what they used to do, oh, the Holy Spirit lays in to that soul.

You can feel it. Who do you think you are? What are you doing? Says the Holy Spirit. Jesus Christ died. He spilled his blood for you, and you’re gonna do this. Now, mind you, that is not me trying to give the example of, well, that’s losing your salvation. And God, the father no longer loves you. Nope, not at all.

He can’t love you anymore. He can’t love you any less. Amen to that. Boy, I love that. But he disciplines his children. Do not get me wrong, he does discipline his kids. And if you are blatantly disobeying, you are not gonna feel good about yourself. Not one bit. So I have to agree that the most miserable person is a Christian who is not in God’s will, who is not walking with the Lord, who is doing everything he or she can to just walk with the world as well.

Can’t do it. And if you’re there, beloved, turn away from the world. The world’s got nothing. The world can’t help you. There’s no promises. Well, there’s no true promises. There’s all kinds of lies. False promises. All the time. Do this or do that. You’re gonna feel better about yourself. The world says, buy this or go there.

And you all feel wonderful about who you are. Lies and lies and more lies where our Holy Father never lies and he loves you so much. Okay, let’s wrap this up. Verse 97 through 100 reads, oh how I love your law. It is my meditation all the day. You, through your commandments, make me wiser than my enemies for they are ever with me.

I have more understanding than all my teachers for your testimonies are. My meditation. I understand more than the ancients because I keep your precepts. That is so powerful and that is why I chose 97 through 100 in the Psalm one 19 to bring to the end of this podcast. Does that not fortify what I have been saying?

That reading God’s word is the only thing that you need? You do not need a higher education. No. It is a relationship that our God wants with you. Let me read 97 through 100 again, and keep in mind when I’m reading this, the power in just reading God’s word for yourself. You have the ability and you have the means.

97. Oh how I love your law. It is my meditation all the day. It should be on our mind when we wake up. As we go throughout our day and we have problems or issues or just things to think about and before we close our eyes, you through your commandments, make me wiser than my enemies for their ever with me.

I have more understanding than all my teachers for your testimonies are. My meditation. So that’s the second use of the word meditation in just a couple of verses. There’s that effort, verse 98, by the way, the last part that reads for they are Ever with me. It means that I have enemies and we will constantly have enemies as a child of God because the world grows more hostile towards Jesus.

So the world will grow more hostile towards us. And 100 I understand more than the ancients because I keep your precepts, the Israelites, you would think that living in God’s presence being led around by Moses and everything, that they would be all knowledgeable of God, but no. Only those who pursue the relationship with the living God obtain such knowledge, such understanding, such wisdom.

But he promises that he will give it to you over and over again. In the Bible, it’s very clear, just keep reading it and so many things make more sense in life. We see life as God wants us to see it through the lens of the maker and not. What the world wants us to see. Love becomes agape love and not just Hollywood.

Lustful love. Empathy comes from the heart, and we reach out to those who are in pain and we celebrate with those who have joy. Life is completely different. Beloved, when you are in God’s word, I don’t promise much in life. I only promise what I truly understand or what I know I can deliver. And I can’t deliver this promise, but I’ll promise you that if you read God’s word, it will change you.

And that’s because God will deliver that, not me. And with that, it’s time for me to wrap things up. Please support this ministry by praying for me and my family, and praying for all who are listening to living God’s way in an ungodly world, that their hearts are softened and that their hearts are opened up in order to receive the message and peripherally consider supporting living God’s way in an ungodly world.

So together we can keep moving forward with more messages to reach more people around the world through the internet. And there are people from all kinds of countries that are listening, and it is wonderful to see that. To support the ministry, just go to my website, that’s b r mall, B r m a u, and click on, donate and support this ministry in three different ways.

There’s a PO Box, there’s PayPal, and there’s credit card. You can use all three of those ways to support it. And I thank you so much for your support and I hope that you come back again next week.

So until next time,

God bless.


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