Baby Christians need milk, that’s what Hebrews 5 tells us. It says that new believers need the elementary truths of God’s word fed to them over and over again. Just like the infant’s tiny tummy which only permits a few hours between feedings, the new believer needs a constant diet of foundational truth. But this passage that goes well into Hebrews 6 is actually a call to wean ourselves from the milk diet. While we will always need foundational truths, we must mature. We must add solids to our spiritual diet.
The writer of Hebrews tells us that “During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears.” (5:7) The simple fact that Jesus prayed has tremendous implications for us. If God Incarnate needed prayer, then how did we ever come to believe we could charge through life without it? Yet much of the time that’s what we do. We neglect to pray, even though we have time for television, facebook, and the treadmill. And when we do carve out time to pray, we often get distracted. Other times we blaze through a list of petitions without feeling or faith that God answers prayer.
The other night I was laying down with Sam. Yes I know, this is a terrible practice, but I’m afraid we are terrible parents and do it every night. On the one hand, it is extremely disruptive to have to lay down with your child to get them to sleep. Ah, but on the other hand it is a little piece of heaven. Sam is such a darling little snuggler and he is growing up so fast. I don’t see myself ever regretting this as wasted time.
The book of Hebrews was written to Jewish believers who were falling away from the true doctrine — the gospel of Jesus. The book was intended to restore them and to eradicate the wrong thinking that had crept in.
I’m making a slow march through Hebrews — every chapter is so rich that it is hard to choose just one or two things to blog about. But in these last verses of Hebrews 4 we are told that our high priest, Jesus Christ the Son of God, is able to relate to our humanness. And I’m so thankful for that, aren’t you? Although Jesus never sinned, He was tempted. Jesus’ life wasn’t easy either. He suffered — shedding tears for friends and sweating blood in utter despair. And of course there was the brutality of the cross itself. Through it all He was God, but He was also man. He was misunderstood, misrepresented, and maligned. And He didn’t deserve any of it. So Jesus isn’t our burden-carrying automaton, He’s a compassionate lover of our souls. He’s waiting to comfort us and relate to us, saying in essence, “me too, friend, me too.”