– by Aden Friedman
“And the day after the Passover, on that very day, they ate of the produce of the land, unleavened cakes and parched grain. And the manna ceased the day after they ate of the produce of the land. And there was no longer manna for the people of Israel, but they ate of the fruit of the land of Canaan that year.” – Joshua 5:11-13
Ever since the nation of Israel had left Egypt, God had been supplying her every need. He had been feeding and rearing her to become the recipient of His promise to inherit the land He had sworn to Abraham. However, there had to come a day when God would stop supplying Israel with manna from heaven. Why? Because Israel needed a shift in identity. Instead of being needy babes who required rescuing, the people were to become a mature, capable, covenant-keeping nation. A people who would inherit the irrevocable promises of God; a people who would learn to sow, reap, and partner with God in His Kingdom process. From that day on, Israel was to eat the fruit of the land.
Milk vs meat
Another example is in Hebrews 5, where believers are rebuked for staying on the milk of the Word and not progressing on to the meat of the Word. This is quite an apt analogy because, as South Africans, we claim to know a thing or two about meat. Our butchers pride themselves on specialising in ‘well-matured or aged meat’ – it’s easier to eat, more flavourful, and far more tender than regular, fresh meat. I believe the concept can also be applied to a child of God. God wants us to mature and age well in Him, so that He can use us to accomplish His plans in this world. If we remain dependent on His ‘milk’, then we remain babes and self-absorbed. Instead, believers are urged to become imitators of those “who through faith and patience inherit the promises” – Hebrews 6:12.
Becoming adults in the Lord
I don’t believe that God wants us spending our time nit-picking doctrine. He wants to supply us with manna while we begin our journey with Him, but then He wants to lead us to the mountain where He calls us into a covenant and gives us a purpose. Our purpose as believers in Yeshua is to grow in the Word and then become teachers of the Word. We need to take the surety of our salvation and “always be ready to make a case for our faith” (1 Peter 3:15), so that unbelievers can see the light of the Messiah. The Lord wants us to sow, reap, and bear fruit. I believe the only way we can do this is to get over ourselves. It’s my hashtag for 2019, and the first step we need to take to become adults in the Lord. We can no longer wait for the pastor to feed us once a week – when we ‘fit church in’ for 90 minutes on a Sunday – with his (hopefully) well-prepared, Scriptural message.
Let’s reach the world!
Jeremiah 29:5 gives us a good, healthy picture of our mandate as believers, “Build houses and live in them; plant gardens and eat their produce.” Attached to our task of growing up and taking charge of our calling is a promise from the Lord, “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” – Jeremiah 29:11. Let us, therefore, conduct ourselves in a ‘manna’ worthy of our calling. Let us reach the world with the good news of the Messiah that has come to save us all!
ADEN FRIEDMAN is a missionary with Jews for Jesus and is stationed in Johannesburg.
To book Aden as a speaker in your church or at your next conference, please contact the Jews for Jesus office:
Facebook: Jews for Jesus South Africa
Twitter – @moshiachisnow
Tel: 011 880 7956
Article source: JOY! Magazine (June 2019)