Hebrews 12:4 Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.
5 And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him:
6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.
7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?
8 But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.
9 Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?
10 For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness.
11 Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.

Introductory Thoughts

Contrary to today’s all-inclusive teachings, no one comes into this world as a child of God. In fact, the Bible plainly teaches that God becomes the Father of only those who trust Christ as personal Saviour. This new relationship between the Father and His children results from a personal, conscious, willing decision. As the Father of His children, God at times finds it necessary to chasten (or correct) believers. No chastening is enjoyable, especially that from an all-knowing Father. Unfortunately, when God begins administering His corrective hand, far too many Christians quit. Consequently, those who quit on the Lord never experience the by-product of God’s chastening—“the peaceable fruit of righteousness.” Christians should never take the grace of God in vain by thinking that simply being saved pleases the Lord. God wants and expects much more. His chastening hand confirms the believer’s wrongdoing and directs him in the right direction. When God cares enough to correct a man’s wrongdoing, it is an uncaring response to quit. The believer who loves the Lord will accept the correction and grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ.

Devotional Thoughts

· (For children): Taking something that doesn’t belong to you without permission is wrong. The Bible says, “Thou shalt not steal.” Mom and dad love you enough to teach you these truths now. A thief who gets caught may end up standing before the judge and will sometimes end up in jail. God teaches us the rules and guidelines necessary to keep us out of trouble.  
· (For everyone): Can you think of anything lately that the Lord has personally had to correct in your life? How did you feel when the Lord convicted you concerning this sin? What did you do when He chastened you?
· Do you get upset when someone points out as wrong something that you are doing? Do you get defensive when someone proves from the scriptures that you are wrong?

Prayer Thoughts

· Ask God to soften your heart toward His chastening hand so that you are more easily corrected.
· Ask God to give you a willingness to change based upon the truth found in His precious word.
SONG: Cleanse Me