Many Christians are very immature in their faith. They understand that the they are to grow in their love for the Lord Jesus and the seek to do so by attending the means of grace. They read, pray, listen to sermons, attend church, even the Lord’s Supper, but something remains missing in their Christian experience. Without being able to verbalize the problem, many Christians in today’s entertainment culture are looking for just that: entertainment.

Even in the most conservative of Reformed and Presbyterian churches you have this problem of entertainment. In these circles this sin will manifest itself in the immature Christian as always needing to chase after a new doctrine or base the “value” of a sermon on whether or not he or she has heard something new. This attitude can be harmful to the Church of Christ. God has chosen to have his people follow the Old Paths…he does not call us to chase after and blaze new ones.

Charles Bridges, in his early 1800s volume to Christian ministers addressed the need for novelty:
The first impressions (of the faith) may have been made rather by the novelty than by the direct power of truth….to live up to the continual excitement of novelty, in preference to the old established truths. This naturally results in an imperfect* apprehension of the Gospel, that fully accounts for defects of Christian temper, as well as for the unsteady resistance to the world…favouratism (sic) in Scripture is both the grandparent of heresy and instability of profession. The Word of God loses its power when displaced from its position, dissevered from its practical connexion (sic), or when a part, however important, is taken for the whole…

*imperfect as in not whole, or not complete.

Bridges sees these people as needing to be novel in faith which leads to a favoratism of certain passages of the bible (examples: John 3.16, I Cor 12 or 13, or Biblical sayings “Judge not”, “All in moderation”, etc.) which will in turn lead to many types of heresy and discontentment in their faith. The anedote to the problem he also gives: prefer the old established truths. This is the calling of all Christians, immature and well seasoned, do not forsake the old paths for the need to be novel and entertained.

Discussion Points:
-How can we encourage the immature in faith?
-What personal disciplines will aid in fighting the need to be entertained (however subtle the need is?)
-What spiritual excercises would you recommed for those struggling against this serious sin?