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7 REASONS WE SHOULD EMBRACE GOD'S TRAINING

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Every significant task on earth requires training. The homemaker, the accountant, the pastor, the CEO all have to learn somewhere and somehow. To do life in the way God intends requires training, and God Himself, our Father, is our Master Trainer. 

IT'S HARD

Ask anyone who has been trained or is in the process. To be rightly developed, there is a process involved that is often not easy. Part of this is to acclimate the trainee to the rigors of what they are about to do. A soldier must face some simulated battlefield conditions to be ready for the real thing. 

We should expect nothing less from God as He equips us for the most important task of living purposefully to advance the kingdom, overcoming the world, the flesh, and the devil, and helping men towards heaven. There is a serious mission ahead for the believer with eternal consequences at stake.

We often do not embrace His training. We get resistant, confused, and upset at what is happening and what He is either causing or allowing. He uses difficult situations, tough relationships, hardship and suffering in ways that prepare us for all of life. Look through Hebrews, Chapter 11 at the great Roll Call of Faith and you will see that no great man or woman was spared this discipline.

In Hebrews, Chapter 12, the writer tells us that we should not "regard lightly the discipline of the Lord nor faint when you are reproved by Him." And, then He tells us why.

1. IT IS MOTIVATED BY PERFECT LOVE

For those whom the Lord loves He disciplines, and He scourges every son whom He receives (vs. 6)

2. IT IS BUILDING INTO US ESSENTIAL DISCIPLINES

It is for discipline that you endure (vs. 7)

3. IT IS FROM OUR PERFECT FATHER WHO IS TREATING US AS HIS OWN CHILDREN

God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live? (vs. 7-9)

4. EACH TRAINING IS MOMENTARY AND HAS AN END

For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them (vs. 10)

All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful (vs. 11)

5. IT IS ALWAYS DESIGNED TO BE BENEFICIAL

He disciplines us for our good (vs. 10)

6. ITS END GOAL IS TO MAKE US INTO HIS IMAGE

He disciplines us for our good, that we may share His holiness (vs. 10)

7. ALTHOUGH HARD, IT WILL YIELD THE PEACEFUL FRUIT OF RIGHTEOUSNESS

All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness (vs. 11)

As we are going through seasons of God’s training, we must see it for what it really is and embrace it with understanding, and even joy, giving thanks in all things. It is perfect in its purpose and will yield fruit in your life that you long for and cannot obtain any other way. 

And we must never give up. Look to Jesus. Look to our Elder Brother who “endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God” (vs. 2)

 

Posted by Bill Elliff

AN INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL CHANGE

The great miracle of Christianity is that there is a fundamental change that occurs when we come to faith in Christ. In fact, there are two changes that happen to a believer that are both internal and external.

“This is the covenant that I will make with them After those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws upon their heart, And on their mind I will write them,” He then says, "And their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.” (Hebrews 10:16-17)

EXTERNALLY

... the work of the cross is applied to our lives. Because of Christ's sacrifice which paid for our sins, we are eternally forgiven for our sins before God that allows us to live in “peace facing God” (Romans 5:1-2). The work of the Savior on the cross occurred to accomplish this very miracle!

INTERNALLY

... no one can live up to God's standard. But God transforms those who believe by sending His Spirit to indwell us. As we learn to depend more and more on Him, He produces righteousness and holy living in us. He produces spiritual fruit and service through us. As Paul says, “It is no longer I who lives, but Christ who lives through me” (Galatians 2:20)

We are internally able to fulfill the law because it is now "upon our heart" and written on our minds. There is an inward compulsion to holiness and an inward ability to overcome sin (as we will cooperate with the Spirit inside of us) that we never had before. We are changed from the inside out.

The first change makes a believer fit for heaven; the second, fit for earth. Hallelujah for such a Savior!

Posted by Bill Elliff

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