Summary: Exhortation for spiritual growth
2 Chronicles 24:2, 15, 17-18
Spoon feeding is an important aspect of life, all of us as children have been spoon fed. I had the privilege of being spoon fed, mom did it patiently with treats, and dad did it not so patiently with threats. Sorry for those of you who were too independent and fed yourself (and your cloths & high chair you sat on).
I cannot stress enough on the importance of spoon feeding, especially now that we have a 7 month old who is completely dependent on us for feeding him. If we don’t feed him and he were to help himself, he will not survive. And, oh the joy of feeding that little mouth, and seeing the grin on his face as he swallows each scoop and notices the approval in your face! But if this guy is 5 and I still have to spoon feed him, I don’t know how much I will enjoy it.
Now, imagine if your son/daughter is 21, would you spoon feed him/her? What if he/she is 35? 50? 70? I guess at some point past 85-90 some may need spoon feeding again, let’s not go that far, for now. You are expecting your child to grow up, become independent and accept responsibility. Solomon may put it this way, there is a time to spoon feed and there is a time to refrain.
If we have expectations from our children, how much more God expects from us. Jesus said, to whom much is given, much is required. Paul put it this way, ‘Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.’ Ephesians 4:15, 16 ESV.
There are plenty of portions of scripture that points to the fact of ‘new birth or the born again experience’, John 3:1-21 is a classic passage on the subject. When a child is born, he/she is not expected to help themselves, likewise when a person is born again, he/she is not expected to know everything and do everything perfectly. But God is expecting all of us to grow up (spiritually), God expects us to stop being spoon fed, and God expects us to go out and replicate (bring more people to faith in Christ by preaching the gospel) and God expects us to spoon feed those who are born again. Now, you can go from grade 1 to grade 12 in 12 years, or you can go from grade 1 to grade 12 in 15 or 18yrs, you can decide your pace. Or you can stay in Kindergarten all your life. Many churches have become pre-schools, people are content with the spoon feeding they receive. Don’t get me wrong, they are well-meaning folks who attend every church meeting and paying their tithe on time and will throw in extra funds for missions and volunteer at homeless shelters.
What do I mean by spoon feeding in the spiritual sense? Everyone was led to Christ by someone, or by the circumstances they grew up in (Christian homes/schools). The person who led you to Christ may or may not contribute to your spiritual growth by feeding you with scripture, praying with you and basically holding your hand as you learn to walk the Christian walk. The pastor of the church or an elder or deacon may help. There comes a point where we grow up, mature in our relationship with God, where we don’t need someone babying us. Please note, when I’m referring to spoon feeding, that does not include fellowship of the saints (where we all need each other) or learning & studying scripture under a godly leader (pastor/ deacon). We should always have a spiritual accountability partner and authority, or there is a possibility of spiritual pride and other sins which will take the best of us. We have to learn till we depart from this earth.
This is how you know you got over spoon feeding; when you wrestle with God in prayer, you spend time in the word. Every time an issue comes up in life, you don’t run to your pastor or elder, you spend time in prayer and seeking God. You learn to trust in God. You receive your answers from God. You have a personal knowledge of God. You are not living on borrowed faith anymore!
It is about time we grow up and reproduce and spoon feed the ones we reproduce! If we ourselves are still spoon-feeding and the spoon feeder dies, we too will die, because we never learned to feed ourselves, which means we will not fulfill the Lord’s commandment to preach the gospel and we will have no posterity to feed!