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October 5, 2023

The Right Spiritual Diet

Leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity.

–Hebrews 6:1

What causes a Christian to become spiritually stunted, to remain an infant in Christ? In 1 Corinthians 3:2, Paul told us one cause of carnality is a wrong diet. He said, “I gave you milk to drink, not solid food; for you were not yet able to receive it. Indeed, even now you are not able.” In the Bible, there are two categories of spiritual food: milk and meat. Now, there is nothing wrong with milk. But if you keep giving a person milk and no meat, they are not going to grow. That is what Paul was saying here–he could give the Corinthian Christians only spiritual milk.

What is spiritual milk? The writer of Hebrews told us in Hebrews 5:12: “Though by this time you ought to be teachers, you have need again for somebody to teach you the elementary principles of the oracles of God, and you have come to need milk and not solid food.” Then in chapter 6, he continued, “Therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, of instruction about washings and laying on of hands, and the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment” (vv. 1-2).

Spiritual milk refers to the elementary teachings about Jesus Christ–who He is and what He did for us on the cross. The writer said those teachings about Christ are foundational, but they are also elementary. You will never grow as a Christian as long as you keep going over the basic facts of the gospel. You will never grow as a Christian as long as you depend on Christian music to give you all the food you need. You will never grow as a Christian as long as you keep reading your favorite Scripture passage over and over. You have to change your spiritual diet.

Years ago, a doctor told me if I wanted to avoid colon cancer, I needed to eat Bran Flakes and Metamucil every morning. The truth is, I cannot stand the stuff. There are mornings I would much rather drive through McDonald’s and get a greasy sausage biscuit. But the reason I changed my diet was to maintain my physical health. In the same way, if you are going to stay healthy spiritually, you need to change your diet. But here is the difference: when you go from spiritual milk to spiritual meat, you will develop a taste for it. Yes, there are times I do not feel like reading my Bible, but once I get into God’s Word, that craving grows.

Maybe you are in danger of starving to death spiritually because you have subsisted on spiritual milk for too long. There comes a time when you have to move from milk to meat.


Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Baby Talk” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2010.

Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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