So ok…milk. Seriously? Are we really going to start studying elemental principles of the faith? Shouldn’t we be focused on the prophetic swirl in the current church atmosphere? Shouldn’t we be taking on ourselves, the mantles of intercessors from apostolic ambassadors and holy men and women of yesteryear? Maybe we should be doing some spiritual mapping to defy the impact of reptillian adversaries in the underground dwellingplaces. Yes…shouldn’t we be routing power-demons and shifting principalities to predetermined locales so the glory of the ekklesia can be advanced into strategic realms? Maybe. But, maybe not. At least, not now.
When the storm comes (you know, the one they prophesied would come), you will have nothing to rely on but your foundation. Speak as deep as you want about these pseudo-spiritual concepts which make us sound special, but ummm…when is the last time you memorized a scripture? Can you name the books of the Bible? What is the Pentateuch? Wisdom literature? History books? Major and minor prophets? What are the synoptic gospels? The Pauline 13? The general 8?
I have come to realize something. We can talk to Christians about their opinions all day, but there are few that will discuss the Bible, itself.
Therefore let us leave the elementary doctrine of Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, and of instruction about washings, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment (Hebrews 6:1-2).
Some of us have been in church for many years (even decades!) but lack a foundation. This becomes evident when the storms of life come. What’s most amazing is that if you compare the amount of time spent in church and applied that to other things, then clearly we should be masters at the scriptures by now. For example: Imagine being in athletic training. Would you be an athlete by now, if you had trained for ten years? What about higher education? What level of education can you attain (from where you are now) in the next ten years? How about a move to Japan? If you had been living there for ten years, would you know the language by now? Would you know the culture? Would you be able to start a business? Pay taxes? Live a solid life?
The answer is “YES” to all of the above. Why is it then, that we can spend the same ten years in church, going every week (sometimes multiple times per week), and still not be acquainted with the books of the bible? We still cannot articulate the gospel. We still don’t really know what repentance is. We still seek our own desires, and not the desires of Christ. We still don’t forgive, love, show mercy, give bountifully, rejoice in trials, love our spouse and our children! Why are these things lacking? It’s because of the foundation. For many of us , it is lacking, after all these years in church, trying to get the “deeper things of God.”
In this next season, we will NOT be moving on from the elementary principles. We will dive right in and stay there until through our maturity, we have qualified to move on. It is imperative that we be mature in the spirit. I mean, actually mature, and not just LOOKING mature. We are going to put discipleship and foundation building at a premium. We are going to drink some milk — sincere milk. Then…we will see change at a deeper level. Let’s start here:
39 Books of the Old Testament:
- Gel and DJ Jr. 12…12…12…endurance never ends. (The Law and History)
- Just powerful poetry, even sensuality. (Poetic Wisdom Literature)
- I’m just learning every day. (Major Prophets)
- His just and outstanding jewish ministers. Noble heroes, zealous hearts, zealous men. (Minor Prophets)
- Rehearse your own journey. Do you recognize areas where you were unskillful in the fundamental truths of the Word of God, and you suffered the consequences as a result?
- Take time to review your spiritual diet. Is the Word of God a prominent part of your life?
- Are you strong and stable in some areas of life, yet you find yourself weak and inconsistent in other areas?
- How do you resolve the gap between hearing the Word, and doing the Word?