Hebrews 5:14 But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.

Those who study God’s word diligently and listen to the Holy Spirit’s guidance and conviction upon the conscience will mature in their faith. The result will be a growing ability to know the right path to take and what to avoid. It takes practice and study to distinguish good from evil. Our “natural” inclination is to be spiritually lazy and to conform to the world around us. That is the wide gate and easy road Jesus talked about in Matthew 7:13 that most people follow. The word “mature” is important in many passages in the New Testament. It points to that which has reached its goal or has been perfected. Our goal in life is to be transformed into the likeness of Christ. That is the “Sabbath day rest” from ch. 4. It is not a state to be in but a lifestyle to embrace. It is an never ending journey and not a place that we arrive. It is a relationship to grow stronger in. Those who are mature have been sanctified and are growing in this relationship. This maturity does not happen accidentally or casually, for example, by simply attending a church service. It comes about by “constant use,” practice and training. We must be personally involved. The verb for training here is perfect tense, which indicates that the training started at some point and is continuing on even now. We cannot rest on what we did years ago but must keep fresh and active in this training.

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