Not Solid Food
Hebrews 5:12-13 (ESV) -- For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the basic principles of the oracles of God. You need milk, not solid food, for everyone who lives on milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, since he is a child.
Imagine seeing an adult breastfeeding for their nourishment. Then imagine inquiring about why they were doing that and you learned that it was the only sustenance they ever received. First, you wouldn’t think it was normal. Your first instincts would be to say something is very wrong with the entire situation. And you wouldn’t be wrong. Second, the reason you know something is wrong is because babies breastfeed, but then maturing requires advancing to more solid types of nutrition. Maturity is about moving from liquids to solids.
Our passage today actually references this progression and ties it to our spiritual growth. The Hebrew writer says, “For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the basic principles of the oracles of God. You need milk, not solid food, for everyone who lives on milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, since he is a child.”
The Hebrew uses this illustration the same way I did to talk about the need for Christians to mature in their faith. He says they “need milk.” He is referencing breastfeeding. They are like babies, like children. They should be on solid food by now. They’ve been Christians too long to still need the basic principles taught over and over. Their advancement should be further along, even many of them should be teachers.
This could be a description of the modern church today too. Many churches are filled with milk drinkers instead of Christians on solid food. There ought to be more than a handful of capable teachers within the congregation. It shouldn’t just be the paid pastors and a few “super Christians.” But that is the culture that has developed on a large scale. This begins with each Christian taking their own spiritual growth more seriously. There must be effort and energy devoted to learning the Scriptures, developing a prayer life, and growing in obedience. When the church begins getting this right, we will see our churches growing stronger.
Reflection & Journal:
- What does it look like for Christians to still be on milk?
- Why is it expected that Christians grow spiritually and advance to solid food?
- How can you personally take steps of growth? What things do you need to keep growing in?
Sign up to receive our daily devotions in your inbox here!