Text: Hebrews 12:1-13
Discipline is not to burden us, but to lighten our load (v.1)
Even at the very beginning of the teachings of discipline. Discipline is not merely intended to burden the people in following God, but to lessen the load of those who needs it. Discipline is like working out and body exercise. It seems that it is a burden to those who do it, yet the main purpose is to strengthen one’s Spiritual life and that later on he will be able to stand against temptation.
Discipline is not all about us, but all about God (v.2-4)
We do discipline not to punish someone. In fact, the book of Hebrews 12 starting in verse 2 tells us that we have to fix our eyes on Jesus and that we have to consider him because the sufferings that we have right now is not comparable to what he already suffered.
Notice that our focus should be on Jesus and not mainly for ourselves. One of the reasons why people does not want to undergo discipline is because we focus our eyes on the pain that we are to experience. This is not only true to Church discipline but to any other form of discipline. But guess, what, the Bible speaks of hope behind those hardships. It is because, discipline is not all about us, but all about God.
Discipline is God’s love (v.5-6)
One of the misconceptions of discipline is that people see discipline as a form of hate. They see discipline as an expression of vengeance of God. The Bible however proves that God’s discipline is not an expression of vengeance nor anger but an expression of love.
No father who loves his children that don’t discipline them. Even the Bible agrees to this. And the same thing with God. God discipline his children. Furthermore in verse 8, it says that if we are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then we are illegitimate children and not true sons.
Discipline is a sign that we are His (v.7-10)
Just like the previous point, here we can see that discipline is a sign, and evidence that we are God’s. The same thing is true with the family. We can never discipline someone that is not a part of our family. If we are not disciplined, then all the more that we have to worry, because it simply means that we are not a part of the family.
Children can only be exempted from discipline when they start to form their own family. The time that they will leave the house of their parents to form a new family.
Discipline is hard (v.11)
The Bible speaks clearly that there is no discipline that is pleasant at the very moment. All disciplines are hard. They are not easy. And perhaps, this is why most people are afraid of discipline. Whether it is a family discipline, a church discipline, or even in social discipline.
This is why we always have to be responsible in our decision making and to all things that we do. This is because in everything we do, there is always equal amount of reactions. If we do wrong, then we will suffer negatively. If we do right, we will enjoy things positively.
Discipline is for producing fruits of righteousness and peace (v.11)
Even if there are consequences in our wrong actions, we have to know that behind discipline is a fact that it is intended to produce the fruit of righteousness and peace. There are people who rebel against discipline, and we know that rebellion will never do good for the person who undergoes discipline.
In fact, verses 14-29 tells us about a warning that we should not refuse God even in times that He disciplines us.