The Northfield

  2535 Shore Road

  Northfield, NJ 08225

  (609)646-1181

Church of Christ

11/26/2007

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"Dear friend, do not imitate what is evil but what is good" (3 John 11).

I have preached a series of lessons on spiritual growth here at the Northfield the past 5 weeks. To aid us in spiritual growth, we need to appreciate the value of role models. We are commanded (Phil 3:17; 4:9) to emulate others, even as they sought to emulate Christ. (1 Cor. 11:1)

We are natural imitators. Children imitate their parents, and teenagers imitate their popular peers or someone else they look up to. Christians often imitate those they hold in high regard, sometimes for the better and sometimes not. Lets face it, good role models can help and bad one can hinder. If we desire to grow spiritually, the good ones are the ones we must seek. But where are they?

I would suggest first and foremost that we have Diety. Christ encouraged us to do do in showing kindness to our enemies (Matt 5:43-48). Paul instructed the Ephesians to walk in love (Eph. 5:1-2). What better examples do we have than that of God and Jesus Christ? Indeed, some of the titles we proudly wear imply such imitation.( "Children of God, Disciples of Jesus Christ")

We also have biblical characters. The New Testament is filled with good examples fo Christians today. For married couples there is the example of Priscilla and Aquila.(Rom 16). For those blessed with things of this life there is the example of Philemon and Gaius (Phile.1-7; 3John 5-8). For women there is Dorcas (Ac 9: 36,39). For young men there is Timothy (Ph.2:19-22).

Since we are natural born imitators, let us make the choice to imitate the good. "We want each of you to show this same diligence to the end, in order to make your hope sure. We do not want you to become lazy, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised" (Heb. 6:11-12).

Have a wonderful beginning to your week. Make a difference...Love mark Phil. 4:11

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