Deuteronomy 8:5 Thou shalt also consider in thine heart, that, as a man chasteneth his son, so the LORD thy God chasteneth thee.Introductory Thoughts
Chastening is best associated to a parent-child relationship (Deuteronomy 8:5; 2 Samuel 7:14; Proverbs 13:24; Proverbs 19:18; Hebrews 12:6-8). As such, God’s chastening, at least within the New Testament, is only intended for those He calls His sons (1 John 3:2). God chastens His children, not to administer justice, but to strengthen and correct them. The believer does not receive some type of punishment from the Lord resulting from the believer’s sins because these sins have been completely atoned through the shed blood of Christ. However, the saint’s continued practice of sin requires the chastening hand of the Lord in order to conform him into the image of Christ. While chastening is reserved exclusively for sons, a lost man receives only punishment or salvation.
• (For children): Children need to be taught the truth so they can make wise choices between good and evil (1 Peter 2:2; Hebrews 5:14). When you choose the wrong, you need to be corrected. Your correction is that of a child being corrected and you certainly remain a member of your family and very much loved. Consider these verses and be grateful that dad and mom care for you: Proverbs 22:15; Proverbs 23:13-14.
• (For everyone): Why is it a blessing to know that chastening rather than punishment is the product of being a believer? What does this suggest about God’s purpose in dealing with you?
• If chastening is meted out by the Lord as a Father to a son, how should you react to His chastening? How can you be grateful in the midst of His chastening?
• Thank God for His chastening.
• Ask the Lord to help you see the blessings of chastening.
SONG: AMIDST THY WRATH REMEMBER LOVE