And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. (Rom 5:3-6)

Let not those who hope in you be put to shame through me, O Lord GOD of hosts; let not those who seek you be brought to dishonor through me, O God of Israel. (Psalm 69:6)

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Marks of Religious Growth

Marks of Religious Growth, adapted from J C Ryle

Many of you all know I gain a lot of insight and challenge form a minister in England some one hundred years ago named J C Ryle.  This morning as I was reading I came across this list.  I will spare you the fine details, but want to encourage you nonetheless with this list.  These notes come from his book Holiness.

“We do not question the reality of growth in grace and its vast importance.  You want to know how anyone may find whether he is growing in grace or not?  First observe, we are very poor judges of our own condition, and bystanders know us better than we know ourselves.  But there are certain great marks and signs of growth in grace.

Humility- The man whose soul is growing feels his own sinfulness and unworthiness more every year.  The nearer he draws to God, and the more he sees of God’s holiness and perfections, the more thoroughly is he sensible of his own countless imperfections.

Increase in faith and love towards our Lord Jesus Christ.

Increase in holiness of life and conversation. The man whose soul is growing gets more dominion over sin, the world, and the devil every year.  He becomes more careful about his temper, his words, and actions.  He is more watchful over his conduct in every relation of life.

Increased spirituality of taste and mind. He takes more interest in spiritual things every year.

Increase in Charity.  His love will show itself actively in a growing disposition to do kindnesses, to take trouble for others, to be good natured to everybody, to be generous, sympathizing, thoughtful, tender hearted, and considerate.

Increased zeal and diligence for trying to do good to souls.  The man who is really growing will take greater interest in the salvation of sinners every year.

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