The origin of this post came from a place of frustration. I had heard, one too many times, a common Christian complaint. There are many variations…but they all can be summed up, thusly: “Feed ME! Don’t make me work for my spiritual growth!” Wanting not to offend, not wanting someone to “go astray”…we concede and pour more “milk”.
For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the basic principles of the oracles of God. You need milk, not solid food, for everyone who lives on milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, since he is a child. But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil. (Hebrews 5:12-14, ESV)
But I, brothers, could not address you as spiritual people, but as people of the flesh, as infants in Christ. I fed you with milk, not solid food, for you were not ready for it. And even now you are not yet ready, for you are still of the flesh. For while there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not of the flesh and behaving only in a human way? (1 Corinthians 3:1-3, ESV)
We are to help spiritually feed others…but when the person complaining claims to have been a follower of Christ for over 10, 20, 30 years…why are they sitting there whining “FEED ME”? As Paul and the writer of Hebrews points out…we need to grow to a point, we can take solid food…to where we can “eat” on our own. It seems too many Christians aren’t willing to carry their cross, instead, they want someone to spoon-feed them. This spiritual “babe” attitude makes me wonder if churches should remove all the crosses and replace them with spoons.
Now, as I sit and think on it…the spoon isn’t a bad symbol. We should always have some “baby” Christians, not because they sit and refuse to grow…but instead if we’re discipling as we are called to do, we should need to be teaching “infants in Christ”, helping them grow and mature to the point they can grab a spoon and begin to feed another new “infant in Christ”…disciples making disciples.
So, no I don’t believe we should get rid of the cross as a symbol…I admit to responding to a frustration, then becoming a tad hyperbolic to grab attention. But the spoon may not be a bad complimentary symbol…a reminder regarding a couple of things…
When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. (1 Corinthians 13:11, ESV)
Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:19-20, ESV)