According to Heb 12:5-11, if you are a child of God, then you are going to be chastened by God in your life. In this passage, there is a good bit to learn about God’s chastisement.
God chastens us for:
Our Profit – Heb 12:10 – ”but he for our profit.” Our fathers, on the other hand, chastened us “after their own pleasure.” God wants us:
- To “live,” Heb 12:9. He’s not trying to destroy us.
- To “be partakers of his holiness,” Heb 12:10
- To bear the “peaceable fruit of righteousness,” Heb 12:11
When God chastens us:
He loves us – Heb 12:6 – “for whom the Lord loveth, he chaseneth.”
He deals with us – Heb 12:7 – “God dealeth with you as with sons.” Notice that we “are exercised thereby,” Heb 12:11
He corrects us – Heb 12:9 – “we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us.”
When God chastens us, he doesn’t want us to:
Despise him – Heb 12:5 – “despise not thou the chastening of the Lord.” If you do despise him, you’ll become angry and bitter with God.
Faint – Heb 12:5 – “nor faint when thou art rebuked of him.” He doesn’t want us to faint in the same way that a coach doesn’t want an athlete to quit.
When God chastens us, he expects us to:
Endure his chastening – Heb 12:7 – “if ye endure chastening.” Chastening is not “joyous, but grievous,” Heb 12:11. It’s going to be tough, but in the end it’s going to be better.
Repent – Heb 12:9 – “which corrected us,” and Rev 3:19 “As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.” Job 34:31, “I have borne chastisement, I will not offend anymore.”
Subject ourselves to him – Heb 12:9 – “shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?” Once we are going his way willingly, the exercise of chastisement has succeeded.
Note: God doesn’t chasten bastards. “If ye be without chastisement… then are ye bastards and not sons,” Heb 12:8. A bastard is not genuine; he’s not a son. He resembles a son but he is false. You see, God chastens ALL his sons. Heb 12:6 – He chastens “every son whom he receiveth.” Chastisement is something “whereof all are partakers,” Heb 12:8. So, if you see a fellow who professes to be a Christian and God is not chastening him, there’s a good chance you are not dealing with a child of God.
In the next lesson, we’ll learn about some of the ways God chastens his sons.