September 25, 2019
It’s Time to Leave our Childish Ways
Leaving our Childish Ways – 1 Corinthians 13:11
On Sunday September 22, Pastor Eric shared a message he called, “Letting Go of Childish Ways”.
When it comes to having faith, Scriptures encourage us to have childlike faith. However, this is not to be confused with what it means to mature in the faith. Pastor Eric shared 3 ways to spot spiritual immaturity in our own personal lives:
1. Childish speech
2. Childish thoughts
3. Childish reasoning.
1 Corinthians 13:11 “When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways.
Watch the video here:
Disclaimer. This video transcript has been provided for those who prefer reading the sermon. Our transcripts are extracted from the video sermon. The style of writing is one of speaking and not of writing and could contain sentence structure errors.
At a tea for officers and their wives, the commanding general of a base delivered a seemingly endless oration. A young lieutenant grumbled to the woman sitting beside him, “What a pompous and unbearable old windbag that slob is!”
The woman turned to him, her face red with rage. “Excuse me, Lieutenant. Do you have any idea who I am?”
“No ma’am,” the man fumbled.
“I am the wife of the man you just called an unbearable old windbag.”
“Oh,” said the lieutenant. “And do you have any idea who I am?”
“No,” said the general’s wife.
“Good” said the lieutenant, getting up from his seat and disappearing into the crowd.
As I was praying this week and asking for direction about this morning’s message, the Lord impressed upon me a thought that I want to share with you,
And to be honest, I was kind of surprised about what the topic of the message was but the more I studied it, the more I thought about and the more I began to unpack this the more I saw how important this is for us today.
And it goes like this:
It is time to let go of Childish ways.
If you have your bibles turn with me to 1 Corinthians 13:11. And just leave it open there we are going to read it in just a moment. But before we look at this, I do want to say that there are child like qualities we are to imitate in our lives.
Jesus said in :
Matthew 18:3 “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.
There are certain childlike traits and characteristics we are to have like:
- The Faith and trust of a child
You ever noticed that?
A child believes without complication. A child has not had time to allow the preconceived notions of the world to form his opinions and beliefs.
I remember joking around with my kids and making stories up to them and realized it’s probably not a good idea because they believed what I said too easily.
But when they are young their faith is pure .They trust easily. That’s why kids are vulnerable and often a prey and we need to protect children.
There is no coincidence why the bible says parents are to train their children in the way to go.
Because it’s when they are young that their faith is at the best.
This is one reason why I am so blessed to see the different ministries in our church that is geared towards kids.
As Im speaking right now, there are workers downstairs and upstairs in Children Church who are busy people like every body else but they always find time to serve your children by bringing the word of God to them in a way that is fun, dynamic and relevant for their age.
We need to keep them in prayer. Parents we need to thank them for their ministry towards our kids. In fact some of them are in the room, lets take 10 seconds to show our appreciation to all the children church and nursery workers in our church.
This week on Wednesday when I dropped my kids to the very first kids service of Awana.
I was blessed to see the amount of kids from NBC there. Over 20 kids on a Wednesday night.
Do you know what that tells me? That tells me that the parents of this church truly value the spiritual growth and health for their kids.
This is the time to invest in their faith.
Because they are at an age where their faith is being developed and shaped. It’s the best time.
The best years to learn about God and the ways of God because When we are adults we need to go back and learn to have the faith of a child.
So there are things we need to keep from our childhood.
- Also, the innocence of child when it comes to evil.
And the list goes on.
There are good things we are to never loose from our childhood.
And if we do loose them, as we just read, Jesus tells us to turn to repent and become like children in those areas.
But there are others childish ways that needs to go.
You may be hearing this today and saying, what does he mean by childish ways?
Im not a child anymore. Im not a kid.
Im 40-50-60 years old or more. My child days are behind me
What does it mean to leave our childish ways?
Look with me to 1 Corinthians 13:11 where the apostle Paul says:
When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. 1 Corinthians 13:11 ESV
A great sense of what the apostle Paul is speaking here has to do with our understanding of heaven, of the kingdom of God of what is to come.
He’s basically saying that as long as we are on earth, we can have all the revelations from the word of God, from prophesies and gifts of knowledge but we still understand in part.
In fact he says in verse 8, the following:
8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part (partial and incomplete) and we prophesy in part, 10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears.
We will fully understand when we are in the presence of the Lord one day but for now, our understanding is partial and incomplete.
Just like a child’s understanding is incomplete and understands fully when he grows into manhood, so this is the context in which we find verse 11.
But there’s an element where Paul describes spiritual maturity.
When I became a man, I gave up childish ways.
He’s talking about the natural progression of our spiritual life.
And the church Paul was writing, the church in Corinth had a lot of childish ways.
So it is possible to say, I have been a christian for 10- 15 -20 even 30 years and still have childish ways.
The way I read this is Im going to have childish ways until I put them away, until I give them up.
“When I became a man, I gave up childish ways.”
There are christians today that you have become a man (10-20-30 years) believer but you still have childish ways because you didn’t give up your childish ways.
And from what Paul is saying in 1 Corinthians 13:11
There are 3 ways we can spot spiritual immaturity.
And 3 childish things that we need to let go
First, it’s time to let go of:
Two, it’s time to let go of:
And three, it’s time to let go of:
A great way to know if we qualify for this message today is by doing a spiritual inventory and asking ourselves the questions:
What am I saying?
What am I thinking?
And how am I reasoning?
And the answers to these questions will show you if you are a boy or if you are man. If you mature or immature in your walk with God.
Babies Are Cute, but Not When They Have to Shave.
First, it’s time to let go of:
A Child normally has limited but developing vocabulary with which he or she communicates.
But you can spot a child by these 3 things:
A, The Focus of their Speech.
B, The Content of their Speech.
C, The Quality of their Speech.
A, the Focus of their Speech is not hard to know what it is.
What does a child normally focuses on in any conversation?
Themselves! Thats it. It always revolves around them. Now I’m generalizing but not really.
I mean parents, go home today and listen to your kids.
How much of what they say has to do with:
-What they do;
-What they have done;
-What they need;
-What they want;
-How they feel;
-What they wish;
-What they are going to do.
I mean it’s probably easy for me to see this because I have 3 young children at home. So it’s fresh in my mind.
When they get back from school and I ask how was their day, what did they learn what did they do, one starts and one of the other ones doesn’t even wait for other to finish and already he’s talking about himself.
About his day, how good he was, what he learned, what he accomplished.
I mean try it, I don’t know how many words your child speaks in a day but if you were to look at a percentage of every word spoken that day. The focus of their speech probably revolves around them, their interests, their needs, their wants, their desires. And it’s normal. They’re kids.
We were kids and we did the same, but as you mature and grow the focus of your speech shifts and changes.
Now when you grow into manhood and become a parent the focus of your speech revolves not around you.
Do you know what it revolves around?
-Your kids interests;
-Your kids needs;
-Your kids wants;
-Your kids desires.
And others’ focus.
B, the Content of their speech
Children can say a lot of things, and as a parent you laugh sometimes because of some of the fun imagination our kids have. Kids have a fun imagination.
Then there’s the:
C, the Quality of their speech
A child often times is vulnerable to pick up things other people have said.
I remember when my oldest came back from school one day and said something that both my wife and I looked at each other and closed our hears and said what did you just say?
And when we found out where they learned that it was from a kid at school.
And kids can learn to say nasty things to other kids.
Kids can learn to manipulate and deceive with their speech.
They can learn to insult with their speech, lie and exaggerate.
But what does the Bible tell us about our speech?
If we are to abandon our childish speech, what are we to do differently?
Lets let the Bible answer this.
Proverbs 21:23 ESV
Whoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.
The spiritual mature person learns to pray God put a lid on my lips. Keep my mouth and my tongue in check.
So I can keep myself out of trouble.
There’s a call to self control over the speech.
James 3:2 ESV puts it this way
For we all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle his whole body. James 3:2 ESV
The word perfect here means he is full grown, of full age, specially of the completeness of Christian character.
In other words, he is mature.
Proverbs 27:2 ESV
Let another praise you, and not your own mouth; a stranger, and not your own lips.
Now there are certain moral behaviours we should practice like:
Ephesians 4:29 ESV
Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.
We are not called to repeat everything our culture says. Everything we hear everybody else says.
We have been called to speak differently. Let no corrupting talk come out of our mouths. And this is for ministers too.
1 Timothy 4:12
Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.
Our speech needs to be different from the rest of world. I truly believe that believers should abstain from cussing, insulting, swearing, belittling, boasting just because everybody else is doing it. We have been called to show an example.
We are the light in this world
We are the salt.
Ephesians 5:4 ESV
Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving.
Colossians 4:6 ESV
Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.
Encourage one another daily, as long as it is called ‘Today,’ Heb. 3:13
Psalm 34:13 ESV
Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking deceit.
I know I shouldn’t have to say this to a church but christians are supposed to walk and tell the truth.Not exaggerate,
not deceive and manipulate but to speak honestly in love in grace.
The quality of our speech should be in a way that builds other people up. That edifies, that fuels faith, that speaks love and truth.
The second things we see here is a call to let go of the
When I was a child I used to dream all kinds of dreams
Some where good and some where more like a mental fantasy.
And I realized that it’s so easy to be a dreamer
But it’s another thing to be a doer.
There are people who dream all their lives and then there are people who live their dreams.
The difference is in the maturity of the person.
Are you following?
Now this is similar to the focus of the child’s speech.
Because they usually speak what they think.
They speak about what’s in their mind.
So the focus of their thoughts still revolves a lot around themselves.
One of the ways we can know if we are spiritual immature is when we we see that we think like a child.
A child has no or little responsibility.
He doesn’t have to go get a job to pay the rent.
He may have some choirs and some responsibilities.
But there are minimal compare to adults.
They are takers more than givers.
They think about play all day.
They do only what is fun.
But adults do what is fun and also what needs to be done even when it’s not pleasant.
And we see this in different churches
People going to church with the focus of themselves
What’s in it for me? They sit, they receive, they take, they go get their blessing but they are never a blessing in return.
They do only what is fun and exciting but don’t do what needs to be done.
But God gave us all gifts.
And we are part of the body so if a foot decides I am just going to sit.
Im going to be a taker and not a giver.
Im going to be a consumer and not a disciple.
Then how many know that the body is going to be crippled?
Proverbs 23:7 says
as a man thinks so he is
So the question is what kind of man are you?
You will know by what you are thinking.
Whats on your mind?
It is clear here that there are phases to our understanding the child’s ability to learn and solve problems.
There is a process.
You start by understanding as a child and eventually you start understanding as a man.
However, Paul is addressing man (adult) who are reasoning like a child.
It is often imperfect views of things.
They jump to conclusion too quickly.
But adults throughout misjudging and through mistakes.
Learn to not jump to conclusion too quickly because their might be a story behind this.
1 Cor 14:20 NLV
Dear brothers and sisters, don’t be childish in your understanding of these things. Be innocent as babies when it comes to evil, but be mature in understanding matters of this kind.
I put away childish things.