Posted on: March 24th, 2024

Irresponsible, short-sighted, rash and selfish conduct is often
proof of immaturity. But we do not refer to years. People sixty
and above may be immature — acting like little children when
they do not get their way, or are forced to face the realities of
this life. They are incapable of objectivity, their pride is easily hurt, and they throw a tantrum. That is bad enough in secular life, but it can be tragic in the church.

Bible knowledge maturity is found in those who dwell on
something more than first principles (Heb. 5:12-f). They have
learned that justice, mercy, and faith are the grounds upon
which their concern for tithes of mint, anice and cummin can
have validity. Ignore the first, and one becomes a hypocritical
nit-picker with all else (Matt. 23:23-24). He may strain at a
gnat, and swallow a camel.

People-dealing maturity comes only after we learn that we are
all sinners, and are completely humbled before God. The
“babe” seeks an “issue” so he can “give ’em Hell” and perhaps
make a “name” for himself. But maturity seeks for souls,
hoping to “give ’em Heaven,” and save them from Hell. The
babe sees himself as a General in the Lord’s army; the mature
saint is an expendable servant of the Lord.

Doctrinal maturity is not compromise with error. It is simply
wisdom enough to know we do not know it all. The babe
paddles wildly about on the surface of the water, loudly
proclaiming his domination of the seas; but maturity is aware
of the unexplored depths below. The fool has an answer, the
wise, a reason.

Paul told Timothy to “flee youthful lusts” and “foolish and
unlearned questions avoid” (2 Tim. 2:22-f). There is no
“instant maturity” for any of us. We must start with
instructions to youth, and “by reason of use” we may “grow
up” in Christ. All of us are in the process in many facets of
the Christian life, not having attained (Phil. 3:12-f). We can
be patient and tolerant of blustering spiritual babes without
appointing them as elders, preachers, and editors. In time,
with enough milk and nurture, we may all learn to act like
men. Robert F. Turner