Summary: Part four discusses how baby Christian misinterpret God's word and establishes wrong beliefs based on their lack of understanding.
It’s Time To Grow Up Part 4
This is part four of my series, “It’s Time To Grow Up!” In my previous messages I shared with you that there are many baby Christians within the Church, some who have been members of the Church for many years. I shared with you that God expects us to grow up and mature in Christ. It is through our maturing that we are able to reach others for Him through our personal testimonies. I have shared with you that it can be easy to recognize a baby Christian based on what they eat. As it relates to Christian growth in the Word of God, baby Christians can understand and accept only the simple concepts of Christianity (the milk of the word.)
My plan this morning was to focus on 2 Timothy 2:15, but I want to lay the proper foundation for it. This morning we will examine how baby Christians are unable to rightly divide God’s word, (read it and gaining deeper insight from it.) In some cases it means they read the Word but do not necessarily gain the real truth from it. In other cases they read and study the Bible to confirm what they already believe and then build their personal foundation on Scriptures taken out of context. These baby Christians know what they want to believe and search the Scriptures for those that can be “interpreted” their way. Once they find their Scriptures, they begin quoting them and making their view a sound doctrine that others will follow. For example, remember how people always say, “the Lord gives it and the Lord takes it away, blessed be the name of the Lord?” Someone took this from Job 1:21 and established this as a truth for Christians to accept. However, Job’s understanding was not accurate as everything that was happening to him was not being done to him by God. Had Job known the source of his troubles he would not have blamed God for all of his misfortunes. This is what I am talking about when I say we read without the full understanding. There are many believers walking around thinking that God is taking things away from them to teach them a valuable lesson.
This morning we will examine what was recorded in the sixth chapter of the book of John to how baby and mature Christians respond to the meat of the Word of God. Before we go to the book of John, I want to remind you of what was recorded in Hebrews 4:12. It says, “For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” This is what the Word of God does in our lives. It speaks to heart matters! His word is the authoritative standard by which all thoughts and actions are to be measured and mature Christians understand and accepts this. Now I want you to keep this Scripture in mind as I share with you the examples from the book of John.
I read an article once about cannibalism and how the Bible not only mentions it, but that Jesus taught His disciples to do that very thing. Let me be clear, when you read the Old Testament, you will find examples of this, but it’s not recorded as something that God approves of versus something that He knew would take place because of the hearts of the people. There are people today who use what Jesus said to His followers to justify this behavior. Before I read this to you, I want to make this point: we know that Jesus did not teach that we should eat other people and that their interpretation of this Scripture is not true. However, if we do not rightly divide the Word of God (continuous study) we will not be able to defend the truth of the Word because based on what they are quoting, it’s exactly what Jesus said. Turn to John 6:53-58 and let’s read what Jesus said. “So Jesus said to them, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in yourselves. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day. For My flesh is true food, and My blood is true drink. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who eats Me, he also will live because of Me. This is the bread which came down out of heaven; not as the fathers ate and died; he who eats this bread will live forever.” (NASB)