My personality is very emotional, and very straightforward. Even though I know I need to deny myself daily, I still struggle to be who I need to be for God. Is there something that I can read in the Bible that helps me to be a man who is aggressive and on fire for God most of the time?
The answer is found in 1 John 2:12-14 and Ephesians 5:18. The first passage is about spiritual growth, and the second one is how empower your spiritual growth. 1 John 2:12-14 describes three different steps in our spiritual growth. Here is the passage,
I am writing to you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you for His name’s sake. I am writing to you, fathers, because you know Him who has been from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one. I have written to you, children, because you know the Father. I have written to you, fathers, because you know Him who has been from the beginning. I have written to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one. 1 John 2:12-14 (NASB)
Here the Holy Spirit describes a person starting out as a new Christian, growing into a spiritual young man and then becoming a spiritual father. For a study about 1 John 2:12-14, please visit “How To Walk With God.” What follows emphasizes four very important keys to spiritual growth. This is, how can a man be aggressive and on fire for God?
First — Know the Word of God
The first thing 1 John 2:12-13 teaches is that a young man is one who abides in the word of God. That has two meanings. First, every believer must study the Bible and obey it. It is a priority for every believer to know the Word of God! In order to grow from a spiritual child into a spiritual young man, a Christian must faithfully study the Word of God. The Word of God equips a believer and helps to bring him or her to becoming a “mature man” (Ephesians 4:11-16). There is only one way to know our God and to please Him. We must read the Scriptures and study the Bible as much as we can. Every believer is encouraged to read through the Bible. You can use “Read The Bible In One Year.” You are also encouraged to learn how to study the Bible.
Second — Put On the Armor of God
We are also told that a young man is one who is overcoming the evil one. This does not mean he is a warrior fighting the demonic world. It means he has put on the armor of God so that he or she can stand firm to resist the devil. The armor of God is found in Ephesians 6:10-18. When Paul wrote about the armor of God, he knew the readers would search the scriptures and find these key passages.
And He put on righteousness like a breastplate, and a helmet of salvation on His head; and He put on garments of vengeance for clothing, and wrapped Himself with zeal as a mantle. (NASB) Isaiah 59:17
This passage in Isaiah describes the Messiah who is an example for us to follow. These are pictures of a warrior in battle. The breastplate of righteousness means that the person is seeking to live a holy life. The helmet of salvation means one’s salvation is secure in Christ. The girdle of truth is truthfulness and the feet are secure or at peace with God. The sword of the Spirit or the Word of God and prayer are the only defensive weapons. We need to know the Word of God. The study series about the armor of God is recommended for every believer. The study series has two parts: Armor of God, part 1 and Armor of God, part 2.
Third — Walk in the Spirit
The third key to a dynamic Christian life is to be filled with the Spirit of God. Ephesians 5:18 is a command. As a believer is filled with the Holy Spirit, they will experience increasing victory over sin in his/her life (Galatians 5:16) and is filled with peace and joy (Ephesians 5:19-20). This is wonderful! How can a person become Spirit filled? Confess your sins to God and just ask the Holy Spirit to take control of your life. The Greek word for “to be filled” has the idea of complete surrender to the Holy Spirit. This is surrendering ourselves to His leading. Every believer is strongly encouraged to read two studies, How To Be Filled With The Spirit, and How to Walk by the Spirit.
Fourth — Be Strong in Faith
We are also told that a young man is one who is strong in the faith. This does not mean the spiritual young man can use faith to make things happen. It means that the spiritual young man trusts God and does not worry, fear, or doubt, and is not anxious. The study How to Walk By Faith is strongly recommended in order to learn how to obtain strong faith.
Those are four important keys to the Christian life: 1) bathing myself in the Word of God, 2) putting on the armor of God every day, 3) being constantly filed with the Holy Spirit, and 4) being strong in the faith toward God.
Suggested Links:Searching For God
Filled With The Spirit of God
How To Walk With God
Test: Are You Growing Spiritually?
How To Study the Bible
How To Be Filled With The Spirit
How to Walk by the Spirit
How to Walk By Faith