God’s Loving Chastisement
“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: For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards and not sons. Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh who corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of Spirits, and live? 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. 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” – (Heb.12:5-11).
Scourging and chastening by our Heavenly Father is not to be treated with carelessness. It is to be taken soberly lest the Lord have to whip us again maybe even worse. We should ask “Why is this happening to me? Why did you send this to me? There is a lesson here and I want to learn it.” It is to be accepted sensibly. We are not to faint under the Lord’s dealings, for he does not flog us in blind rage, but measures the weight of each stroke. Each stroke is weighed by him in fairness and firmness to suit our needs exactly and to bring us to our senses, not lay us senseless in the dust. Scourging is to be taken soberly and sensibly and also spiritually. The spiritually discerning saint will recognize his whipping as coming from the Father’s loving hand and respond accordingly.
There are two kinds of punishment and two responses to those corrections. We are warned not to faint and not to despise. One kind of Christian, the fainting kind, will say, “God is forever through with me and has cast me aside permanently.” The other type, grins and bares it with a stiff upper lip and says, “Well it happens all the time. We have to take the bitter with the sweet. O that’s nothing. It happens to a lot of people.” He despises the chastening of the Lord. Both responses are wrong. Do not presume, but do not despair. Don’t give up but don’t laugh it off. The chastening takes the form of a genuine whipping. The rebuke can amount to simply getting a bawling out from the word of God or the man of God. Rebuke is a milder form of correction than the chastisement. God knows the proper balance – he loveth and he scourgeth. All of God’s true children take a beating at times. All natural fathers need to whip their children, but sometimes we do it badly. We’re too hard or too lenient – not often enough or too much. We make errors in the correction of our children. But our Heavenly Father makes no mistakes. He does it perfectly right every time. Chastening is proof that we are the children of God because God chastens every son because he loves them and will straighten them out.
“But if ye be without chastisement.” The idea is if the Lord loves you and you’re his born again son, he will go out of his way to keep you straight. If you’re a bastard and not a son, he will just let you go without any correction. God is going to bring you up in the nurture and admonition of himself, one way or another. It is the Father’s desire to make us Christ-like. The very fact that God chastens us proves us to be sons – God does not own those who he does not beget or chasten. They are not the children of God, they are bastards and our churches are filled with them – unsaved church members. (Vs.9) says – since we have to submit to human fathers and have learned to respect them because of their authority, how much more shall we yield to our Heavenly Father and reverence him. (Vs.10) says – our earthly father’s motive for whipping us may be selfish at times, but our Heavenly Father always has the right motive – it is for our profit. We must always keep this in mind – it’s for our profit – to become more holy. Holiness is God’s intended result in our chastening by him.
(Vs.11) says – certainly every believer who has been through God’s “spanking machine” understands this verse. We don’t enjoy being spanked. What child says “Oh boy, I’m going to get whipped, I can’t wait. I love being beaten. I hope dad really hits me hard.” Nobody talks like that – it’s not joyous, but grievous. Nobody says, “Bless God I broke my arm.” It’s grievous, it hurts, it brings tears to our eyes and pain to our body. But afterwards, it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness. Afterward we come out on top – not before. Chastening of a child of God is designed to produce Holy Spirit fruit in our lives. It’s not pleasant to be whipped but it brings about a Godly change in our lives if we co-operate. The important thing is to see God’s loving hand in the chastening and to co-operate so that the intended result will be realized speedily and you don’t get spanked again. You must repent and correct the problem – amen.
Now I’ve preached on “God’s loving chastisement” because it has recently happened to me and maybe my experience can help you. About two months ago, a car seemingly came out of nowhere and crashed into my car broadside and totaled it out. But miraculously, I was not hurt. I knew it was the Lord talking to me, but I didn’t listen and take it to the Lord. It was rebuke, but no chastisement. Then I had eye trouble and I was told I had a retina problem. That happened on Tuesday and that night I began to listen a little. I turned to (Isaiah 56:7-12) where I recently preached a sermon from (see “Bark Preacher Bark”). Verse 10 says – “His watchman are blind: they are all ignorant, they are all dumb dogs, they cannot bark…” But I pushed it off aside and paid it no mind.
The very next morning I took my morning walk and I was attacked by a pit bull and another dog. The pit bull was the most ferocious dog I ever encountered. I literally fought for my life. Finally while fighting them off, I fell over on the ground on my left wrist and I felt the pain (It broke in four places). The dogs moved in on me to maul me. But just then the Lord sent an angel in a car and he pulled up close and laid on his horn and the dogs stopped their attack and the door to the nearby house opened and their owner called them and the dogs ran inside, and the car pulled away. It was very traumatic and I was in pain. But it was not part of God’s chastisement that I be bitten, so I was not. I had surgery and I had much pain and now after 18 days the hand is still stiff and I will require weeks of therapy for it to be well. But it’s on the mend.
I questioned the Lord about this dog attack and he taught me many things about prophecy and things happening in the world especially with the death of Pope John Paul and the new pope who is called “God’s Rottweiler” – (see my sermon “Beware of Dogs”). But the reason for the attack was plainly told to me by the Lord Jesus. He said “Micheal I have called you to be my Bible Watchman and have given you a website to effectively warn the people and have given you your grandson with the computer skills to be your partner. You are my watchdog to bark and warn the people. But I did not call you to be an attack dog going for the jugular. You can be my watchdog and not be a pit bull.”
God didn’t just give me a love tap on my hand, he broke it in four places to teach me about love. Because this is exactly what I needed – perfectly. The motive was for my profit – to become more holy. I went through God’s spanking machine and it hurt, but my Heavenly Father has my full attention now and I’m saying yes sir to every thing he’s telling me – praise the Lord. Three weeks afterwards it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness in my life. I was taught to preach God’s truth in love. I must preach straight and true as a faithful witness but I must preach it in love. I must bark but not bite and chew their head off. God taught me much about the “Uncompassionate prophet Jonah” and God’s loving chastisement of him. I was constipated and had no bowel movement for nearly two weeks as God taught me about “Bowels of compassion” in (I John 3:17) and (Col.3:12). So my Heavenly Father has whipped me and it has brought a change in my life. I will never be the same man and preacher I was. Don’t think a 64 year old grandfather doesn’t get spanked – hard.
God also used a dear brother and friend in the Lord, who I shared this with, to collaborate the same truth God was teaching me. Brother Larry wrote “I think God is using this to get your attention about you being a pit bull. I never thought of you that way and I covet your criticism of my beliefs if they are wrong. You need to continue to come down hard on false belief but to maybe temper it with love. I never have doubted your love for me in Christ but others who don’t know you as I do and your love for God and his word, might be offended. My dear brother, don’t quit – keep being God’s watchman.” Amen Bro. Larry.
God broke my left wrist and I immediately moved my wristwatch to my right hand as the Lord pointed directly to his Bible Watchman. That the end times are here and it’s time to get in good spiritual shape. The time, times and a half a time of the great tribulation is coming soon. So I thank the Lord for teaching me this painful but necessary lesson. I know beyond a doubt that it was perfectly necessary for my correction. I know he loves me and I have peace. I’ve been born again and begotten by him and he has every right to chasten me – he’s my father. I know absolutely that it was “God’s loving chastisement” and I’ll never quit or faint or despise it but I’ll press on for the Lord. It was the loving hand of God that chastened my hand, right under my watch. And I can say “Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterwards it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.” Even when he broke my arm he loved me. So I will preach the truth in love even to my grievous enemies. I repented. “As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent” – (Rev.3:19).
How about you – are you a child of God? Are you born again? Is God your Father? Do you receive chastisement from him in order to correct you? Do you receive it in the right spirit and accept it and correct the problem? Are you a son of God or a bastard that just goes to church? If not you need to repent of your sins and call upon the Lord Jesus to save you. Ye must be born again. And then God will be your Abba – Father. Born again into the family of God by faith in his beloved son. The choice is eternal life in heaven or eternal death in the lake of fire. Your eternal destiny lies in the choice you make. Don’t reject God’s beloved son. “And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the son to be the Savior of the world” – (I John ). “Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins” – (I John 4:10). “And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name…” (Luke 24:47). Amen and Amen.
God’s Loving Chastisement.
Preacher Mike Storti
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