Satan's Attack or The Lord's Chastening? - Thursday March 19, 2015
Memorise: For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. - Hebrews 12:6
Read: Hebrews 12:4-6
4 Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.
5 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:
6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.
Bible in One Year: Daniel 9-10, Mathew 4:23-5:20
Christians are spiritual soldiers. We engage in constant warfare against principalities, powers and wicked spiritual forces that operate in high places. Ephesians 6:12 says that:
"For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places."
There is a tendency among Christians therefore to view anything unpleasant that happens to them as emanating from spiritual warfare. When a difficult situation arises, many immediately ask God to remove their distress. It is worth noting that not all problems that we face as believers have something to do with the devil or the spiritual warfare we are engaged in. In Galatians 6:7, the Scripture says,
"Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap."
Some hardships, difficulties and unpleasant happenings arise as a result of sin, disobedience, pride or other shortcomings that call for disciplinary action from our Heavenly Father. Sin frequently attracts punishment. Sin can be described as transgression or non-conformity to the law of God in our inward or outward conduct of life, whether by omission or by commission. The Bible indicates that sin justly deserves punishment and that it calls down the righteous judgement of God (Romans 6:23). Various kinds of sins are mentioned in the Scriptures. These include presumptuous sin, secret or hidden sin and sin against the Holy Ghost.
Presumptuous sins refer to defiant acts of sin. These are sins committed on the basis of assumption. Some people steal, tell lies, commit fornication or adultery, forge documents or engage in other evil acts. When such people are confronted with God's view on their waywardness and its implications, they argue that God understands. They assume that God is too holy and kind to send a sinner to Hell-fire. Presumptuous sin is dangerous. God is a God of both love and of judgment (1 John 4:8, Hebrews 10:31). King David wisely prayed that God should keep him from presumptuous sins (Psalm 19:13).
Secret sins are sins which escape the notice of the soul. Many people commit sins without being conscious of it. These also attract divine judgment and chastisement. What such people need is repentance and deliverance. David also prayed that God should cleanse him from secret sins (Psalm 19:12). The last but not the least is sin against the Holy Ghost or what is referred to as "sin unto death" (Matthew 12:31-32, 1 John 5:16). This is a wilful rejection of grace. Are you facing unpleasant happenings? Look inward. God's expectation from chastising is repentance.
Action Point: Examine yourself to see if there is any presumptuous or hidden sin in your life.