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2 Timothy 3:1-17

There are different stages of Christian Growth.  A person is either growing in Christ or they are growing in death.  Paul makes it crystal clear in this passage what both look like.  The hope-giving message is that Christ can and will take the most unlikely person growing in death and transform their life!

Birth- a newborn needs constant feeding.

Child- becoming more dependent of Christ, yet their mainly about their preferences.  They are not as Kingdom minded as other stages.

Teen- They enjoy their preferences, but the big picture of the Kingdom and spiritual reproduction is coming into focus.

Parent- They are following Christ in spiritually reproducing others.  They are making disciples.  Matthew 13:23 “As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it.  He indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.” 

Plants need Sunlight

Exposure to the sun is necessary for plants to grow and thrive. Using energy from sunlight, the plant combines water from rainfall or watering, carbon dioxide from the air around it and nutrients from its growing medium to create sugars, which it uses for growth. This process, known as photosynthesis, is the starting point for the other four things that a plant needs to survive.

Christians need Exposure to the Son

John 8:12 “Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

How do we receive exposure to the Son?  Through a daily relationship, Bible Study, Worship, Witnessing, and through being around other Christians. 


Plants need Water

Water, fundamental to all known life, is essential to plant growth in several different ways. When combined with carbon dioxide, the molecules in water are converted to oxygen and sugar through photosynthesis. It also aids in a plant’s ability to absorb nutrients from its growing medium by dissolving the nutrients, allowing them to make their way into the body of the plant. As water enters the roots and works through the plant body, eventually evaporating out of the stems and leaves, the water helps to cool the plant and allows the plant to absorb carbon dioxide from the air around it.

Christians need the Living Water

John 4:13-14 “Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”


Plants need Carbon Dioxide

Carbon dioxide, which plants use to create the sugar needed for growth, is absorbed from the air around the plant. Living creatures that breathe oxygen expel this chemical compound; a person, for example, inhales oxygen and exhales carbon dioxide. The plant absorbs the carbon dioxide through its leaves and stems as it is evaporating water, and converts the compound created when carbon dioxide and water join into sugar by using energy from sunlight. It then expels oxygen, starting the cycle over again.

Christians need the Holy Spirit

Galatians 5:16-18 “But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.”


Plants need Nutrients

Plants require several different nutrients in order to support the process of photosynthesis and to utilize the sugars it creates for food and to grow. Nearly all plants require some amount of nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus to live, although each specific plant may require different levels of each. They also need magnesium to form chlorophyll, calcium to transport nutrients and sulfur to develop a strong root system. Plants also generally require some amount of iron, chloride, boron, copper and zinc, as well as molybdenum and manganese, both of which help to metabolize nitrogen.

Christians need the Nutrients of God’s Word 1 Peter 2:2-3 “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.”

Symptoms of Death-Self Over Savior vv.2-4,-Substitution That Never Satisfies v.5 (example would be artificial sweeteners)

Signs of Growth-Steadfastness v.10, –Sacrifice vv.11-12, –Scripture Intake vv.14-16, –Spiritually Skilled v.17