Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Meat or Milk?

Hebrews 5:12-14
For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. For every one that useth milk is unskillful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.

When taken literally, this sounds...strange. But this is one not to be taken literally.

Instead of literal milk and meat, the author of Hebrews (probably Paul) uses these two elements to represent levels of understanding when it comes to Biblical and spiritual things.

Milk represents easier to swallow things, simpler things, more general things. Things such as: you are a light in a dark world.

Meat represents harder to chew things, more difficult, complex things. Things such as doctrinal things: did Christ die for the whole world or just for the elect?

This whole meat vs. milk thing if very important. The reason it is important is because if a new believer, or young believer, is immediately bombarded by difficult questions, their faith can be damaged or even destroyed by questions that they are simply not able to answer. But as you grow as a believer it is important that you are challenged by harder stuff - not too hard as to tear at your faith, but hard enough to force you to keep learning.

It's just like with many things in the world. You learn by being forced out of your comfort zone. You won't get anywhere if you just stay with what you know. In fact, you won't know anything that an infant doesn't know. You must be forced out of your comfort zone to learn anything.

Something too hard can discourage and oppress you, something too easy won't teach you anything. The balance in the middle is what we're looking for, and shooting for as we study God's word.

In Christ alone,

No comments: