About Jesus - Steve Sweetman
through 7 says that we should not despise the Lord's discipline in our
lives because as His sons, He does discipline us.
Furthermore, the text states that we should view hardships in our
lives as a means by which God disciplines us.
If you are like me, you don't like hardships, but whether we like
them or not, that's irrelevant. They
have a divine purpose. How
then should we understand divine discipline?
hardship we sometimes ask; "What did I do wrong to deserve
this?" That isn't really
the question we should ask. The
Greek noun "paideia" that is translated as
"discipline" here doesn't necessarily mean punishment.
It means "instruction or training."
The verb form of this word means "to teach or to
instruct." The right
question to ask is this. "What
am I to learn from this hardship so I can mature as a son or daughter of
Despite the claims
of that which is called the "Prosperity Gospel," which I believe
is one of the most damaging heresies inflicting the western church, the
Bible does not teach that Christians are immune from suffering
difficulties in their lives. In
fact this passage says the opposite. If
faith in Jesus is to save us from trials of life then the Apostle Paul,
who I believe is the most effective Christian in history, was one messed
up man. Like everyone else,
Christians suffer hardships. Unlike
everyone else, hardships are one means God uses to help
accomplish His will in our lives.
Discipline is not
punishment. It is instructive
and often appears in our lives through hardships.
We don't have to like hardships, but we do have to embrace the
maturing process they bring to our lives.
They will produce more of the life of Jesus in us, and isn't that what
being a Christian is all about?