Thursday, July 23, 2009

Those Whom I love I Rebuke and Discipline

Rev 3:19Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent. 20Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.

Hebrews 12:7 Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father? ... Is there a son whom his father does not discipline?

Hebrews 12:11 No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.

If time is as short as I think it is, then these days would be days when the Lord is disciplining those he loves to prepare them for the arrival of Jesus. He is returning for a spotless bride, yet many if not most in "christianity" today have zero tolerance for the discipline of the Lord. If they cannot hear words that resemble dancing sugar plums then they shut their ears to whatever is being said. That will be a costly mistake.

There is a remnant of true believers in the world today just like there has always been a remnant of believers from Israel all the way through to today. The remnant always consists of a few, not the many which is why we are told in Matt 7:13-14 that only a few will make it through the small gate that leads to life. This remnant of the few should be speaking a message to the world that is rejected by most people just as the truth has always been rejected in a wicked and sinful world. Our Lord was crucified for the truth, the prophets were tarred and feathered for the truth. Telling the truth to a sinful world is not the way to become popular, its the way to be hated and despised.

In the same way, nobody wants to hear about the Lord's discipline in a sinful and backslidden world. "who are you to judge!" is their cry. The brother writing this to you today is no man's judge, but if the Word of God you read as it is quoted here makes you feel "judged" then perhaps there is a reason for it:

Hebrews 4:12For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. 13Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.

The Word of God "judges" you as you read it. It convicts you where you need convicting. That's not always pleasant and where are the people in the world today who are okay with dispensing with the garbage that most of the world wants to hear so they can hear the Words of God? Where are the people today who call themselves believers who are willing to stand up like men before the Lord's discipline and perfect themselves instead of running away to false gospels that tickle their ears? The true believers are out there, but they are few. Many are called, few are chosen.

Instead of cursing the messenger perhaps people should pick up the Word of God and let it judge them. Perhaps people should begin to look closely at their life and doctrine instead of heaving that responsibility "over the fence" to their hired hand spiritual employees (pastors). What is going to happen on the day that we all stand before the Lord and you see with your own eyes that most people are not making it into the kingdom of God? Will you stand there with knees shaking as you see multitudes being sent into perdition while you wait your turn to be judged? Will you wish you would have taken the Word of God more seriously while you were on earth? Will you wish you would have dispensed with all the candy coated word magic thrown at you week after week in your "churches?" Tough words? Yes, but I would much rather have the Lord's belt on my rear end NOW than stand before him in the spirit later thinking "oh my, oh my, oh my, I wish I would have done this or that or whatever.."

MANY will say to the Lord on that day "we did all kinds of great things in your name Lord" and you know what he says back to them (Matt 7:21-28). Then is not the time to see things clearly, NOW is. When would you prefer to get your dose of "reality" then or now? My words are not "reality," Jesus's words are, the bible. The Lord disciplines those he loves, he rebukes them. Do you think the current state of "christianity" deserves a healthy dose of discipline and rebuke? If so, you show me the servants claiming to be "christians" who are delivering a message in accordance with its backslidden state....they are FEW.

Most teachers and preachers out there today are telling people not to worry about anything, don't worry about repentance or mourning for the sorry state of the church today. Just be happy that the 5 second "decision for Jesus" means they are guaranteed a ticket into heavens gates even though our bibles tell us only a FEW will make it in. Don't worry about working out your salvation with fear and trembling like Paul did, just do a little dance in the aisle while you are playing "church" on Sun-day and be happy that no matter how much sin you are laden with, how faithless your walk is, no matter how disobedient you are our Lord's Word, heaven is guaranteed!

The message for a backslidden church is to repent. The Lord rebukes and disciplines those he loves. grace and peace