Dealing with New Christians

Let us settle it in our minds that grace must have a beginning in every believer’s heart; we have no right to say that a person has no grace just because it does not come to full ripeness at once. We do not expect a child to do the work of a grown man, though he may one day if he lives long enough. Just so, we must not expect a new Christian to show the faith, love, and knowledge of an old soldier of the cross. He may become a mighty champion of the truth by and by. But at first we must give him time. There is great need of wisdom in dealing with all young disciples.

Kindness, patience, and gentleness are of the first importance. We must not try to pour in the new wine too quickly or it will run over. We must take them by the hand and lead them gently on. We must beware of frightening or hurrying them or pressing them too fast. If they have only gotten hold of the main principles of the gospel, let us not set them down as godless because of a few lesser matters. We must bear with weakness and infirmity, and not expect to find ripe Christian experience in those who are only babes in Christ.

– J. C. Ryle

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