Heb 5:12 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. Heb 5:13For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe.
Heb 5:14 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.
The pouting of the lips, receding into oneself, the woe is me attitude and so many other child like behaviour patterns in an individual clearly indicate the immaturity of a person. Similarly Christians who are in need of constant pampering are those who require things to go always well for them. Hence, they do childish things revealing their Christian maturity. Mind you, some of them have been Christians for very long years but have not grown. They are unable to take on maturity even though they know in themselves they need to. Apostle Paul likens it to drinking milk without progressing to meats in order to survive.
Human reactions are often indicators of spiritual maturity? Once a person becomes born again, they are expected to grow out of childhood into adulthood in a spiritual sense. However, if they occupy themselves with carnal attitudes and temperaments, then they remain carnal and hence immature. They feed on milk products of the Christian faith that do not help them to grow. Imagine feeding a fully grown adult in the natural sense milk three times a day, as their main sustenance. It will be a disaster as far as their health is concerned. Likewise, in a spiritual sense, if one does not grow to come into maturity by eating spiritual meats, they will remain childish and soon become a victim of their attitudes and behaviour. This verse speaks of coming out of childishness 1Co 13:11When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. The putting away of childish things begin with recognition of the need to grow spiritually.
I am truly amazed at the number of Christians who still walk around in pampers. This may seem a harsh thing to say but it is the truth. When the natural does not offer an individual an inch in life why do people expect the spiritual to do something different? In the natural, people are willing to accept what the natural dishes out and try hard to grow up to accommodate what life dishes out. They educate themselves, accept life’s difficulties by taking the good with the bad and above all seeking to grow in maturity. My question is; are they not aware that the spiritual is made up of greater demands than the natural? The answer is; ‘no’, because people have been taught an easy gospel. They want what they have been taught by unscrupulous preachers who have sought to give people what they want. That way they can get what they want out of the people. Too often, I have met disillusioned Christians who have left Church because of wanting to be molly coddled and have been disappointed with Church when it does not happen for them. When they have been confronted with the truth about themselves they have become offended like the 3rd seed sowed in the Sowers parable. They are the type who get offended by the word because the word falls on hard ground (hard hearts or deaf ears).
Coming of full age is a great release in the spiritual. It actually is a freedom from bondage and inabilities and limitations of the flesh. Immaturity binds one to the flesh and denies the Spirit life. It is the flesh that seeks to keep a person immature. The Spirit always speaks of higher and deeper things that edify, strengthen and which makes one more than a conqueror through the word (Jesus). The more mature one becomes, the more he partakes of meat (the supernatural) and his sustenance is of meat (maturity) not the weakness of milk (immaturity). It takes a mature person to go on in the Spirit leaving behind the things of this world and the flesh. That is why it says in Galatians 5, that walking in the Spirit is a spiritual thing.
When Joshua lost a battle after failing to follow God’s instructions through the sin of another, God told him to get off his face and stand up. 1Co_16:13 Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong. The word of God expects us to grow into adulthood. We will win some battles and we will lose some battles but we must always act like men who know their God. The word says, “They that know their God shall do great exploits”. The question is, do only some of us know God because it seems that most of us seem to flounder along in our faith trying to make it through the day. The time has come for us to eat meat and act strong in the face of our enemy. Our enemy does not care if we have grown up or not. We are his targets. Just like God, he is not a respecter of persons either. Unlike God, he only cares about himself and will destroy all who get in his way if he can help it. None of us are exempt from the attacks of the enemy.
Growing up in Christ is an exciting thing. When we were babies and did not know what to do from one day to the next, God instructed us and we grew. As we grew, we were able to do things that were extraordinary that no other human being that was not born again could do. Furthermore, the results were so astounding and satisfying that it created a hunger within us to do more and have access to more. Herein is where many made a mistake in their spiritual growth. They moved away from maturity into self and lost sight of what it takes to walk with God. When the trials became harder, many lost their way. When power increased, many lost their way. This list is endless of people who settled for milk instead of meat and yet had been Christians for many years. Spiritual maturity is being able to grasp the things of God and waiting on God to direct our steps into that which He has prepared and is doing. Abraham was such a man.
Apostle Paul writes of Melchisedek a high priest of God. He talks about this priest being like no other. That Jesus comes from this order of priests. Who can understand this kind of glory and ministry of God? Yet, there is an expectation that we understand the ways of God and what He has prepared for us. Heb 5:9 And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him; Heb 5:10Called of God an high priest after the order of Melchisedec. Heb 5:11Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing. Heb 5:12For 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. I believe that Paul is writing about our lack of understanding concerning what has been set up for us in heaven. If we did understand it, we would know how to access what God has prepared. The idea of a High Priest interceding on our behalf in heaven is very encouraging. I cannot see us surviving the onslaught of evil otherwise.
Many think that once they are born again they do not have to work out anything. They are like little babes wanting everything to be done for them. Yet, the mysteries and secrets of God belong to those who are willing to seek God and go into the realm of maturity in the process. We tend to become lazy or discouraged when we find that our journey into the unknown is getting deeper and more intense. I see maturing as a process of cutting away. I once behaved like a child but now I am an adult and have given up childish things. This makes me mature. In the process of then maturing, I go one further and take on the heavy duty stuff and grow even more. One such area is in knowing the love of God for His people.
I am being constantly amazed at the love of God for people. The process of maturing is understanding this love of God. Not everything is what it seems till we understand love. Personally, I am learning so much through this love of God for His people. Yet, I am aware that those who do not receive this love and reject it openly will pay a heavy price. I see the love of God through a condition of His love. That even though He sent Jesus His Son to die for the whole world, He set a condition of faith which involves accepting Jesus as Lord and Saviour before His love would reach us. Otherwise, that love is forfeited and replaced with an eternal death in hell. There are several levels of maturity one must have. With each level of faith a new level of maturity is to be sought. Yet, the whole process requires us to be childlike in our faith to achieve this maturity and actually see results. This is the mystery of Godly relationship.
I cannot imagine what it would be like to serve God as a priest let alone a High Priest. When Aaron and his line of priests were given this great honour, they had to do so many things that would require their lives if they failed. Yet, in Christ, God’s requirement was met once and for all and now the earnest work of the High Priest has begun. This must be an awesome responsibility. In seeking maturity, let us be able to go to the next level in our faith without the complications of diminished understanding that stems from childish behaviour before God. Let us rise above our circumstances by employing the Spirits of wisdom and revelation and ask for understanding of all that He has for us in the gifts, fruit of the Holy Spirit and in the gifts that Jesus gave to the Church that we might fulfil our destinies. There is another level waiting for you personally, that which will cause you great satisfaction in fulfilling your journey as a Christian. Seek it with all earnestness.
Lots of love