2019-05-26
Pastor Jonathan Falwell

Key verse: Hebrews 12:11 (NKJV) Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.

Hebrews 12:4–13 (NLT): After all, you have not yet given your lives in your struggle against sin. 5 And have you forgotten the encouraging words God spoke to you as his children? He said, “My child, don’t make light of the Lord’s discipline, and don’t give up when he corrects you. 6 For the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes each one he accepts as his child.” 7 As you endure this divine discipline, remember that God is treating you as his own children. Who ever heard of a child who is never disciplined by its father? 8 If God doesn’t discipline you as he does all of his children, it means that you are illegitimate and are not really his children at all. 9 Since we respected our earthly fathers who disciplined us, shouldn’t we submit even more to the discipline of the Father of our spirits, and live forever? 10 For our earthly fathers disciplined us for a few years, doing the best they knew how. But God’s discipline is always good for us, so that we might share in his holiness. 11 No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening—it’s painful! But afterward there will be a peaceful harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way. 12 So take a new grip with your tired hands and strengthen your weak knees. 13 Mark out a straight path for your feet so that those who are weak and lame will not fall but become strong.

1. Discipline is encouraging

 

  • Vss 5-6 And have you forgotten the encouraging words God spoke to you as his children? He said, “My child, don’t make light of the Lord’s discipline, and don’t give up when he corrects you. 6 For the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes each one he accepts as his child.”
  • This is an encouragement to remember the words of Proverbs 3:11-12
  • His act of correction and guidance in our lives is a sure sign of His great love for us all

2. Discipline is endearing

  • Vss 7-8 As you endure this divine discipline, remember that God is treating you as his own children. Who ever heard of a child who is never disciplined by its father? 8 If God doesn’t discipline you as he does all of his children, it means that you are illegitimate and are not really his children at all.
  • Discipline reminds us of our relationship with God our Father
  • This is a picture of the type of relationship we should have with God

3. Discipline is engaging

  • Vss 9-10 Since we respected our earthly fathers who disciplined us, shouldn’t we submit even more to the discipline of the Father of our spirits, and live forever? 10 For our earthly fathers disciplined us for a few years, doing the best they knew how. But God’s discipline is always good for us, so that we might share in his holiness.
  • It brings us into a stronger relationship with our holy God, making us more like Him

• The word “holiness” (hagiotēs) is not common (elsewhere in the NT it occurs only in a variant reading in 2 Cor 1:12). It points to God’s holy character. The aim of God’s chastisement of his people is to produce in them a character like his own [1]

  •  Holiness is the ultimate goal for our lives…to be more like Him
  • It defines how we respond to various temptations we face in the journey
  • This “shaping” should be desired not feared

4. Discipline is edifying

  • Vss 11-13 No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening—it’s painful! But afterward there will be a peaceful harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way. 12 So take a new grip with your tired hands and strengthen your weak knees. 13 Mark out a straight path for your feet so that those who are weak and lame will not fall but become strong.
  • While discipline is not fun, the long term rewards are worth the journey
  • It strengthens us for the difficult world in which we live
  • It brings the kind of joy which can only result from a right relationship with God

[1] Morris, L. (1981).  Hebrews. In F. E. Gaebelein (Ed.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Hebrews through Revelation(Vol. 12, pp. 137–138). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House.

 

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