Epistle to the Hebrews 5:11-14   Leave a comment

Epistle to the Hebrews

There is much more we would like to say about this, but it is difficult to explain, especially since you are spiritually dull and don’t seem to listen. You have been believers so long now that you ought to be teaching others. Instead, you need someone to teach you again the basic things about God’s word.You are like babies who need milk and cannot eat solid food.For someone who lives on milk is still an infant and doesn’t know how to do what is right. Solid food is for those who are mature, who through training have the skill to recognize the difference between right and wrong.” Hebrews 5:11-14

We have reached the end of chapter 5 and with the amount of information we got so far, we see that the author had a lot things he wanted to extrapolate but he found himself constrained because the readers were apparently not yet ready to receive solid teachings. In the introduction to the epistle, it was mentioned that the author was unknown. Here we have a clue that there were at least 2 mature men behind the writing of this epistle.

The author does not hide that he has deep thoughts to share. But he is also aware of the lack of maturity of the readers and calls them to spiritual growth. This is indeed the very reason of the writing of this epistle. These Jews had the laws and had so many proofs of the supremacy of Christ. They were probably trying to bring Judaism in the gospel and starting to wander away. The author emphasizes that these Christians have been in the church “for so long”. How was it possible that these elders were still spiritually immature? Is not it what we see today in many churches? We see many people who have been in the church for 20-40 years and we do not see fruits of maturity in their life. They still have to be reminded to pray, feed their soul with the Word, to have faith, to flee from sexual immorality and persevere. They should have been spiritual fathers and mothers – leaders who give a living testimony of Christ. Paul wanted believers to imitate his example because he himself imitated Christ’s example. Are our elders able to teach? Are our elders full with wisdom and led by the Spirit? Are they examples to follow?

The author cannot digest that he still have to remind these people about the basic teachings of Christianity. He compares them to babies who have to be given milk because they are not ready to digest solid food. One who is still with the elementary teachings does not know yet how to live a godly life. Solid food is for the mature, for those who know Christ, for those whom Christ is the central being, for those who do not tremble in persecution, for those who have discernment and cannot be fooled by false doctrines. Milk is given to a new believer by one adult in the faith. But what we see is that those who are supposed to be adults in the faith are still with milk. In other words, you should be teaching advanced mathematics but you still need someone to teach you how to add and subtract?

With experience, the mature believers no longer see things grey but either black or white. They grew in wisdom and are able to discern what is right and wrong. There’s the fragrance of Christ in them. They are men and women led by the Spirit. They can be bold and gentle at the same time. They can appear to be judgmental  but full of love at the same time.

It is through the knowledge of the Son of God that Christians grow up in maturity:

until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ” Eph. 4:13

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Posted July 14, 2012 by Cedric in Theology

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