5 And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as to sons: “My son, do not despise the chastening of the LORD, Nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him;
6 For whom the LORD loves He chastens, And scourges every son whom He receives.”
7 If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten?
8 But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons.
9 Furthermore, we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live?
10 For they indeed for a few days chastened us as seemed best to them, but He for our profit, that we may be partakers of His holiness.
11 Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.
12 Therefore strengthen the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees,
13 and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be dislocated, but rather be healed.
It is very difficult to understand the chastening of the Lord. It is easy to rejoice in its theory. We can preach and teach about the Lord’s chastening right up to the point we begin to experience it. And then verse 11 comes into play. “Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful…” All the air goes out of our balloons when God begins to chasten us. How does His chastening work in the lives of His sons, and why does He chasten us to begin with? Verse 10 says He chastens us that we might become partakers of His holiness. Partaking of His holiness is just another way of saying partaking of His nature. God’s purpose is to create His nature in us. God’s nature formed in us only comes about as the old, Adamic nature is broken. Claiming it broken does not make it so. We are to experience the transformation. Continue reading
There is a scenario that shows up many times in movies. Someone is getting beaten up really bad, and is told, “Just stay down.” But the guy getting beat up is determined to stand up again and keep fighting. So, he gets punched around some more, and ends up on the ground again. Each time he tries to get up, he is knocked back down. He is continually told to just stay down. This is exactly the way God deals with His sons. We have within us a determination to be pleasing to God. We want to “pass” whatever test we think we are under. So, we continue to “get up” and keep swinging in an attempt to win. But the Lord is going to prevail over us, just as He prevailed over Jacob. Our continuing to get up and fight is an expression of the Adamic energies within us. “We” are going to win. “We” are going to prevail over whatever conflict we are in. We don’t perceive that God’s purpose in allowing the battles to begin with is to crush the Adamic energies that drive us. While we may be good intentioned, the Lord will not allow us to prevail in our own strength. No, this is not a pep talk about trusting God. Trusting the Lord is absolutely a necessity. However, that phrase is too often used without any practical application. It ends up being nothing more than pseudo spiritual rhetoric. Continue reading
Much has been written and taught concerning the Kingdom of God. There are even groups who pride themselves in teaching “Kingdom theology.” But one thing is always overlooked: The kingdom of God does not come with signs to be observed (Luke 17:20). The kingdom of God comes within us as an inner work. The kingdom of God is the transformation that takes place in us as Christ’s nature displaces Adam. Jesus said that unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God. We are born again into successive levels of God’s kingdom. Ultimately, the completed work that God will accomplish in His sons will no more resemble what has passed for Christianity than what was opened up on Pentecost resembled Judaism. Continue reading
Everything God creates is created as one, then separated. It is then made one again on a higher level. This is borne out in Genesis.
3 ¶ Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.
4 God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness.
5 God called the light day, and the darkness He called night. And there was evening and there was morning, one day.
6 ¶ Then God said, “Let there be an expanse in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters.”
7 God made the expanse, and separated the waters which were below the expanse from the waters which were above the expanse; and it was so.
8 God called the expanse heaven. And there was evening and there was morning, a second day.
14 ¶ Then God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night, and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years;
15 and let them be for lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth”; and it was so.
16 God made the two great lights, the greater light to govern the day, and the lesser light to govern the night; He made the stars also.
17 God placed them in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth,
18 and to govern the day and the night, and to separate the light from the darkness; and God saw that it was good.
19 There was evening and there was morning, a fourth day.
In each of the above separations, although dealing with the natural earth, there are spiritual connotations. For example, God separated the light from the darkness and called the light day and the darkness night. Rev. 21 speaks mystically of the New Jerusalem and that within her there is no night at all because the presence of the Lord illumines her. Thus, the new Jerusalem, or Zion, becomes a fulfillment of how separation results in a permanent oneness with the nature of God. Continue reading