“Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation— if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good.”
1 Peter 2:2–3 (ESV)
Living things grow. There are milestones one expects of newborn babies. Their lives in the womb are marked with growth, their lives outside the womb are marked with growth. When they seem to not be growing, parents get concerned and seek to do all they can to help the little ones take the next step towards maturity. Christians are no different. None of us should be content with the mere fact that we have a pulse, rather we should think it normal that we are pressing forward seeking to grow up into salvation. A desire to know and be all that God has called you to know and be is evidence of new life in you. That desire is the motivator behind Peter’s imperative to long for God’s Word. The end sought after is growing up into salvation, the means of that growth is the pure Word of God and the source of the desire is the initial taste of the Lord’s goodness.
The day is coming when you shall not know sin in the slightest. A day when you shall manifest in perfection all of the requirements of God’s Law. When your heart shall have no other gods before God and you shall love Him, trust him and delight in him with every fiber in your being. When all of your mind and all of your heart and all of your soul and all of your strength shall be Holy unto the LORD. You shall be holy not only in your position in Christ but in practice also. You shall love your neighbor as yourself. No malice, envy, slander, hypocrisy or any such thing rather, all of your thoughts, attitudes, words and actions shall be ruled by consistent and sincere, brotherly love.
This is what we were saved for Eph 2:10. To grow up into salvation is to seek the things that you have been saved for, the things that your salvation has granted you the desire to seek, the ability to pursue and the assurance that one day the righteousness that you hunger and thirst for shall be fully yours. Peter is calling us to relate to David’s hunger in Psalm 119:1–3 (ESV) “Blessed are those whose way is blameless, who walk in the law of the Lord! Blessed are those who keep his testimonies, who seek him with their whole heart, who also do no wrong, but walk in his ways!” This is why David longed for God’s Word. David is not where he wants to be in his growth but he has a strong desire to purify his path by giving himself to God’s Word. God is calling us to the same desire and pursuit, a desire for growth that can only be attained by giving oneself to the Word of God.
Notice how this pursuit for growth is not driven by a desire to be well thought of by peers, or prideful shame or any such earthly thing. Saints pursue growth because they have tasted that the Lord is good. We seek to grow up into salvation as those who have tasted the honey at the end of the Lord’s rod and now we are obediently and eagerly following him to the harvest that we might satiate ourselves to the full. We have tasted the Lord’s great mercy, steadfast love, infinite wisdom and glorious power in the gospel. The saint now desires the growth that weans him of the loves that sour his knowledge of the goodness of God while growing his love for his good God in his thinking, feeling, being and doing. Growth is not the end, God is. So, if you are struggling in your pursuit for growth in your Christian life remind yourself not of all the rules you have failed to keep but of your good God, not merely of his presents but of his person. God is what you get more of as you grow, God is what you get when your salvation comes to full fruition. Let a vision of the goodness of God fuel your longing for the Word so that you may grow up into your salvation.
- Do you desire to grow in your walk with God? Why?
- Is God good? How?
- Pray that our congregation’s pursuit for holiness would be driven by our desire for God.