“Trained by constant practice”
How thought challenging is the letter to the Hebrews; the above quotation particularly challenged us this morning! Paul (?) is telling his Hebrew readers, with their upbringing in ‘knowing’ God’s word that
“by this time you ought to be teachers” (5:12)
– yet it seems clear they had failed to really absorb God’s word, otherwise
“their powers of discernment” would have been “trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil” (verse 14).
The obvious question for us is, have our “powers of discernment” been adequately “trained” by our regular reading of God’s word? Have we acquired more than head knowledge – such as the Jewish rabbis displayed in the days of Jesus? Ponder Luke 5:17,21,30,31; 11:52-54.
Let us make sure our “powers of discernment” are constantly put to good use. We live in an increasingly evil and godless world – and so – more than ever we must heed the words Paul addressed to the Romans,
“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” (12:2).
Finally, we need to memorise Paul’s final words at the end of his last letter to Timothy, the last words it appears that he wrote,
“… the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man [and woman] of God may be complete, equipped for every good work”
and so make his or her
“powers of discernment”
able to reach perfection because they have been
“trained by constant practice”.
Let us make sure this is true of ourselves – and we should help each other in this.