Growing in Christ

Flowering tree privet

Flowering tree privet (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

[3] And He spoke many things to them in parables, saying, “Behold, the sower went out to sow; [4] and as he sowed, some seeds fell beside the road, and the birds came and ate them up. [5] “Others fell on the rocky places, where they did not have much soil; and immediately they sprang up, because they had no depth of soil. [6] “But when the sun had risen, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away. [7] “Others fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked them out. [8] “And others fell on the good soil and yielded a crop, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty. – Mat 13:3-8 NASB

I named this blog post “Growing in Christ”, but I want you to understand that it could equally be called “Christ Growing in You”. The two names are synonymous.

Lately, I have been impressed with the importance of the inner Life. This inner Life is the inner experience of Christ. The parable of the sower stresses upon us the need of having a deep inner experience of Christ.

You will find a better and more practical explanation of what I will talk about by a great brother in Christ, Milt Rodriguez, at The Rebuilders. His blog post is called Root Before Fruit and I highly recommend it.

Let’s begin with the Seed. The Seed contains the Life. Everything is there in the Seed. Whether it is a flower, a bush, or a great tree, it is contained within that Seed. If you have the Seed, you have the everything!

The Seed planted within us is Christ. If you have Christ you have everything. But, how small He seems at first! He starts as a little Seed inside of us. But, if we would we allow Him to grow in us, to fill and saturate us, how He would be magnified within us and through us!

A glorious mystery is that the Plant that grows forth from the Seed and the soil is our expression of Christ. That Plant is Christ. That Plant is you. That Plant is the beautiful mingling of divinity and humanity. That Plant is the enlargement of the Plant, who died to spread its Seed.

[19] …holding fast to the head, from whom the entire body, being supplied and held together by the joints and ligaments, grows with a growth which is from God. – Col 2:19 NASB

I am not talking about Christ in an objective way, but in a subjective way. I think you all know how great Christ is in a objective way, but we need to experience this Christ in a subjective way if we are going to continue on to maturity.

Back to our Lord’s parable, it is obvious that the different outcomes are due to the difference between the soils. There was no lack in the Seed. Three of the soils were lacking. The Seed must be planted in the innermost being of the soil. Then that Seed must be allowed to grow and spread in the inner being of the soil. From the inner growth of the Seed, its outward expression bursts forth.

We see this outward expression in two, maybe three of the cases. We definitely see some outward expression of the Seed in the shallow and good soil, maybe even in the thorny soil. But, I want to focus on the difference between the shallow soil and good soil. Without deep roots, the outward expression dies. It is by the inner growth of the roots that the outward expression grows. The shallow soil did not allow Christ to grow in its inner being. It tried to express Him outwardly before it had the deep inner experience of Him. With that kind of attitude, we will not experience Life, but death.

[6] Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, [7] having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude. – Col 2:6-7 NASB

Brothers and sisters, do you see what I am getting at? Do you want to express the glory of this Seed? From the inner growth, comes the outer growth, and eventually brings forth flowers and fruit, which are the Plant’s glory!

[18] I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, [19] and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might [20] which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, [21] far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. [22] And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church, [23] which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all. – Eph 1:18-23 NASB

Posted on April 22, 2012, in Exhortation, Jesus Outside the Four Gospels and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Peter,

    Thank you so much for this post! It really speaks to what I am both studying and experiencing at this present time. As you know, I am also studying about the seed and the Parable of the Sower (although I am looking at it more from a perspective of the seed being the word of God – the Bible – rather than the Word of God – Christ).

    I hope to post my study of this on my blog later today, but first about this post of yours.

    In my experience, I have tried to “live the good life” of ministry and good fruit – yet for a long time the fruit didn’t seem to be coming – I would endure for a season, then fall back into sinful behaviour. Yet God has been gracious and as I have spent much time with our Lord a work has been performed in me (and there still needs much more work) and I am now experiencing an outward expression.

    This passage is particularly relevant:

    Lately, I have been impressed with the importance of the inner Life. This inner Life is the inner experience of Christ. The parable of the sower stresses upon us the need of having a deep inner experience of Christ.

    To try to do the Lord’s work without the Lord doing the work in us dooms us to failure. We must “abide in the Vine”.

    Great post Peter!

    • Thank you so much for your encouraging comment, Mark! Perhaps, our views of the parable aren’t too different. Maybe, we just see it from different vantage points. I have found that through the Bible, I am often brought into an experience of Christ. This is especially true, when I am praying about Scripture and praying the Scripture itself. Maybe the outer shell of the seed is the written, spoken, or other such method of transmitting the word, and the Life inside is Christ Himself. Just a thought .

      It pleases my heart that the Lord is doing such a work in you. I too tried to express Him outwardly, without the inward work being done. I had so much frustration and confusion. But, praise our Father! He is more and more revealing His Son in me. There is much more work for Him to do in me as well. I don’t consider myself as having reached maturity(nor anywhere near it), but I continue the race, focusing on Christ, our Prize.

      I look forward to reading your blog post and seeing more of Christ in you. Christ in us, the Hope of Glory!

  2. Bro Peter, I blessed God for the grace that HE has bestowed upon you in which HE count you as one of the babies that HE reveals the hidden mysteries of HIS Glory and LIFE in us as Church, believers, friends and Sons. The ONLY ground that the life of Christ in us germinate is our TOTAL dependence on HIM and fighting the fight of FAITH, for at every occasions our arc enemy always present flesh which suffocate the life of Christ in us and our ability to continually accept the Life of God without doubt make the life take root deep and always ready to bring fruit at the APPOINTED time. Hallelujah

    • Thank you so much for such a high honor! I enjoy the race given to those who have gone before me and I hope that that grace can be shared through me. Christ is our Grace and Life!

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