” But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.” — Hebrew 5:14
Who doesn’t love a grilled steak or a juicy roast chicken? These protein-rich, powerful foods act as the cornerstone to most American diets. However, we don’t start our life with them. Could you imagine giving a baby a 12-ounce ribeye steak? They’d likely play with it instead of eating it. Their little teeth couldn’t handle the dish. They need to develop their diet before they can eat at Outback Steakhouse.
Babies start with milk, then progress to baby-food smoothies, then unsweetened cereal, and then they begin to eat vegetables with little shreds of meat. The whole process takes a few years. The author of Hebrews compared our faith development to the diet of a baby: “You need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature” (5:12-14).
When you are new in your faith, you need to learn the basics. You need to read books like John and leverage Bible studies and devotionals to help you develop. That’s spiritual milk. It’ll nourish you and help you mature. However, you shouldn’t stay there. Once you reach a certain point, it’s time to reach for some “solid food.”
How do we flip the switch? How do we move from spiritual infants to spiritual grownups? We follow the advice of verse 14, which explains the Bible is for “constant use.” It doesn’t say random use, Sunday-only use, or occasional use. Rather, the Bible is for daily use. This central habit is the catalyst for growth and maturing.
If you aren’t as mature as you should be, it’s time to commit to consistency. Read the Bible every day. Study it with your friends. Buy books to help you understand the culture and context. Listen to sermons that help you apply it to your life. Every chapter studied is like a chunk of meat and a side of greens; it’ll help you grow.
The more you grow, the further you will go.