TODAY'S WORD FOR Monday, July 01, 2019:
To reprimand; to inflict suffering or punishment upon to humble or improve; to discipline; to refine.
If you endure chastening, God deals with you just as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten.
Chasten your son while there is hope, and do not set your heart on his destruction.
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
The word chasten as used in the Bible means to use methods of discipline for the purpose of teaching or improving a person. God is our heavenly Father and He deals with us as His children. As our Father He desires that we love Him and be obedient to Him. We are all sinners and are naturally not inclined to be obedient.
God must chasten us just as a parent must chasten a child. He must correct us when we sin in order to improve our character. When we break God’s laws, God chastens us allowing us to suffer the consequences of our sin.
As children we were chastened by our parents and as parents, we chastened our children. We set boundaries and when the boundaries were crossed a reprimand of correction was given and followed by a consequence of punishment if appropriate. Times of disciplining were not happy times but were necessary to teach our children right from wrong and the importance of obedience, not to just us as their parents but more importantly to God and His commandments.
God does the same with us as believers in Him. In the verse above from Hebrews, we are reminded that God will deal with us as His sons just as a father chastens his son (or daughter). We need the discipline that God gives us and when we break His rules we will be chastened by God. This is a certain fact and cannot be negotiated.
In Hosea 10:10 the prophet Hosea tells us about God chastening the Children of Israel. He says, “When it is My desire, I will chasten them. Peoples shall be gathered against them when I bind them for their two transgressions.” Hosea does not say maybe God will respond but he says that He will respond when He desires. We all know that we learned to do what was right through the punishments and reprimands of our parents. God is not vindictive when He chastens us, but it will not be a pleasant experience. He chastens us to correct us and to refine us. The purpose of God’s chastening is to be a learning experience that molds us into being more Christ-like.
One final word: Parents have a responsibility to chasten their children. The writer of Hebrews gives us two warnings. The first is not to wait until it is too late to chasten your child. The second is a reminder that those parents who over-indulge their child and refuse to correct them can bring about their child’s destruction Proverbs 19:18. Children who are not disciplined by their parents feel their parents do not really love them because they do not care what they do.
Discipline is never pleasant, nor is it easy. Children do not like to be corrected or punished and it is often hard as a parent to chasten a child. Often when a child is young, parents find the child’s misbehavior cute or even humorous. But who shows greater love for the child? The parent who allows the child to do whatever he or she wants or the parent who corrects and chastens the child in order to teach the child what is right?
God is never amused by our sinful behavior and He does not turn a blind eye to our disobedience. When God chastens us it is because He loves us so much. We must ask Him to show us what needs to be corrected in our life and desire to learn the lesson He is teaching us.
Our memory verse for this week is found in John 3:16.
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
Help me to learn through the chastening You choose to give me when I am disobedient and sin. Help me to learn to be more Christ-like in order for my life to be an example to those that I meet or see today.
These Family Devotional thoughts are written by Dr. Ken Phillips, Executive Director of America's Hunger
Solution, and his wife Dottie. Ken has had ministry positions
with The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, World Vision, Youth For Christ, World Opportunities International,
and World Bible Society. He also has consulted for more than 30 Christian ministries in management and stewardship
development. They have published a book called No Problems Only Situations that discusses the journey of their family.
Ken and Dottie have been married for 60 years, and have 6 children, 20 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. Their
second book, TODAY'S WORD, includes 365 daily
devotionals and is now available for only $10.
Ken & Dottie Phillips
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