Endure hardship as discipline
How can a good and living God allow suffering. A question we all can struggle with. We know we are saved. We know God is good. But we find it hard to understand when we go through difficult times. This text addresses believers. Hopefully this will better equip us to face the hardships we no doubt will face.
Consider the hardships we face as discipline is what this passage tells us.
Earlier we seen in Hebrews there is a cost involved in following Christ. The road may be hard but God has marked it out for you.
Why do we need perseverance? Why is the Christian life so difficult?
1/. We are not alone in our hardship. 3 - 4.
When you are going through a difficult time it is easy to feel self pity and loneliness. The author here is telling us we are not alone in our sufferings. We are to consider Jesus. He endured great hardship in His life. He was opposed by sinful men. He was physically abused. He was opposed by friend and foe alike. The text tells us He was abused so that we wouldn't become weary and give up. Jesus can sympathise with us. We can gain strength from Him.
We are also to consider other believers. They also have endured sufferings. Believers have been martyred for their faith. Their blood was shed for their faith. Let us put our hardship into perspective. When people make fun of us for being saved we think it's a big thing but it is nothing compared to what others endure.
2/. We are not unloved in our hardships. 5 - 9.
We can feel that Gods's love is not directed towards us. In our everyday living we can think this. However this shows us God loves us so much, He disciplines us.
The word discipline occurs 7 times here. We are also reminded we are His children. God is our Father. We have access to Him. We share His blessings. It also means we are disciplined as His children.
Scripture presents God as a God of discipline. We tend to forget this.
The Lord rebukes His children out of love not hate.
Society itself shows that any good father disciplines his children. Today we are being told that discipline is abusive toward our children but this was not the case when this was written.
Father's should rightly discipline their children. It produces fruit in our children's lives. Our children will respect us for it.
How much more should we respect the discipline of our Heavenly Father. We should praise God for His discipline.
If we are not disciplined we are not truly His child.
We normally pray that God will remove our problems. We think God isn't caring.
What if sometimes God doesn't want to remove that trouble. Maybe He wants to use the problem to produce a harvest. What if it isn't because He doesn't love us but that He really does love us. Pause, reflect and pray that God will use whatever it is to make me more like Jesus.
3/. We are not unproductive in our hardship.
10 - 11.
Human fathers don't always get it right. God always does. It is always done for the best intent. It always produces a harvest.
They produce in us holiness, righteousness and peace.
Our hardships help to produce a more holy life. The disciplined Christian is the growing Christian, the holy Christian, the righteous Christian, the Christian at peace.
Discipline will produce a harvest in our lives. Our trials are God's means of making us grow. No pain, no gain.
If we are going to mature as a Christian we need to understand this passage. We need to understand that God does discipline us if we are His children.
We shouldn't make light of His discipline. And we shouldn't lose heart when He does rebuke us.
What is God trying to tell us. What is he trying to change in our lives. When He does want to change something we shouldn't think He is just picking on us and trying to make our lives miserable. No, exactly the opposite. He is wanting to make us better. He is wanting to make us more like Him.
Created 7 months ago