Real men eat meat. Or something like that. In fact, real Christ-followers should eat meat too.
After the nice diversion down the ‘Bible mothers’ bunny trail, it’s time to get back to the regularly scheduled posts about growth. We talked about brokenness and desiring milk. Today, let’s get into the meat of this topic.
Our spiritual man is just like a physical man – he’s a body who needs to eat, drink and exercise. Unless he doesn’t want to grow.
Babies don’t live on milk alone. Not for more than a few months anyway. Moms shovel some cereal into them before bedtime so they’ll sleep longer.
Before long, they’re eating all sorts of pureed items. They need vegetables, fruit, grains and proteins to be completely nourished. And the whole idea of meat pudding in a jar? Unappetizing.
If a kid has teeth, they’re ready for something to chew on. In fact, they want to gnaw on something hard every time a tooth makes an appearance.
For the spiritual man, these hard truths and meaty doctrines will help him to become mature and grow into the likeness of Christ.
“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” (Hebrews 5:12).
Even if you don’t teach a class, every believer is a teacher. Your actions and attitude shine forth to those around you – believers and nonbelievers.
As the Hebrew writer points out, some people aren’t ready to teach – even by example. They aren’t mature enough to be weaned from the milk of the word, yet.
Sadly, some people might have a head of gray hair and be staunch member of the church for fifty years and still subsist only on meat.
Deeper truths from God’s word are hard to understand. Most people won’t latch on to them the first time they hear. Maybe they’ll be confused by the teaching the second time they hear it.
As they live for Christ, and diligently read and meditate on His Word, the Holy Ghost cultivates their hearts. Before long, they have “aha” moments while reading their Bibles.
Remember, Christ told the disciples MANY things they didn’t understand (like the fact that he would be crucified and rise the third day). Eventually, they were able to comprehend.
If you shy away from harder subjects, you might still be unskillful in the word. If all you want is the milk of the word, you are still a babe (Hebrews 5:13).
“But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age” (Hebrews 5:14a). The phrase “full age” can also be translated “perfect.”
This is not the always right perfect. Instead, it means complete or mature.
How do you get this way? Use your mind until you can “discern both good and evil” (Hebrews 5:14).
Exercise. That’s what it takes to be able to digest the spiritual meat from God’s Word.
Someone betrayed me. Do I get angry? Do I look for a chance to get them back? Do I tell all my friends how they wronged me? Or do I forgive and treat them with kindness?
Applying God’s Word in our daily life is exercising our sense of discernment. Will we always do the right thing? Not in this lifetime. But that doesn’t mean we return to babe status.
The more we face the difficult situations and proceed through them in the same manner Christ would, the more discernment we learn. Soon we’ll have the spiritual gray hair that shows our wisdom.
Eat up. You need muscles in order to live for Christ. Meat has protein, the building block of muscle tissue.
Where’s the meat? Have you been eating some lately?