Discover His heart: He desires that we mature in our knowledge of Him
I have a computer photo program that I would really like to learn how to use. Every couple of months I determine that I am going to learn this program, and I set out to do just that. However, each time I get a few steps into the program, something happens to distract me, and I never move past that point. A few months later I start up again at the beginning, etc. The Hebrew Christians were having a similar problem, but it had nothing to do with computer programs.
“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.” (5:11-12) Spiritually dull. Ouch! It’s easy to hear the frustration in the writer’s words, but if we’ve ever worked with a dull knife, we know the aggravation.
With the dialogue now started, the writer moved from the spiritually dull statement to some specifics, “So let us stop going over the basic teachings about Christ again and again. Let us go on instead and become mature in our understanding. Surely we don’t need to start again with the fundamental importance of repenting from evil deeds and placing our faith in God. You don’t need further instruction about baptisms, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment. And so, God willing, we will move forward to further understanding.” (6:1-3)
While pastors rarely are so blatant in their sermons to call us spiritually dull, I’m fairly certain they think it at times. Their goal is to challenge us to grow into an intimate relationship with God our creator, but we seem to stay at the “Hello, so nice to meet you” stage with Him when we actually should be introducing others to the Lord. The reason is similar to my computer issue. I keep starting at the beginning of the tutorial because too much time has elapsed between learning sessions. I start over each time, making very little progress.
No offense to my pastor friends, but hearing a Sunday morning sermon is not enough to keep us steadily maturing in the Lord. Pastors provide food that we can chew on all week long until it’s digested and becomes a part of us, but if we want to continue growing, we won’t stop there. As we read God’s Word each day, we become more and more familiar with Him, and our daily personal conversations with Him during prayer move us past the hello stage. By the time the next Sunday or midweek Bible Study comes around, we not only remember what we learned the week before, but we have built on it! No more starting with the basics again. We certainly won’t be considered spiritually dull. We’ll be sharp! And sharp is good.
Moving Forward: I’m going to chew on some meat today, get past those basics and be spiritually sharp for Him to use.
Tomorrow @ Numbers 29-32