The Greatest Text Message | Hebrews 12:5-11 | Devotional
And you have forgotten that word of encouragement that addresses you as sons: "My son, do not make light of the Lord's discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you, because the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes everyone he accepts as a son." Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father? If you are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then you are illegitimate children and not true sons. Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of our spirits and live! Our fathers disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.
Discipline is a part of life for all of us who are sinners by nature. From the time we are young and fling our baby food - smashed up carrots - across the dining room (for good reason), to the times we throw our more sophisticated (but not much) adult tantrums, discipline is needed. Discipline not only forms our character, but keeps us safe. As a child, we need to know that fire is something to stay away from, without learning the lesson from third degree burns. We need to be taught that electrical outlets are not toys before we stick a key in the socket. We need some serious instruction that that “thing” called a “street” is busy with things called “cars” and therefore not an area where we can play.
Discipline is a part of life for all of us who are sinners by birth. From the time we are young Christians and make a mess of things, to the time we are old Christians and make a mess of things, discipline is needed. Discipline not only forms our character, but keeps us spiritually safe. God loves us too much to let us play in dangerous areas. We need the discipline when:
- We play on the busy street of materialism
- We get too close to the fires of sexual temptation
- We play with things that are spiritually dangerous
- We care more about what people think than what God thinks
- We gossip
- Our spirit is critical
- We spew harsh words at others
The list could go on and on, couldn’t it? Suffice it to say, we need the discipline from our loving heavenly Father. It won’t be pleasant in the present; but later on it “produces a harvest of righteousness and peace” for those who are willing to submit to its training.