God’s Discipline is for Our Good

“Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent.” Revelation 3:19

This verse comes from a message Jesus gave to the leaders of the church in a town called Laodicea in the first century. Jesus had a strong message of rebuke for this church because he found their Christianity to be lukewarm. They were financially successful and had become proud and self-satisfied, professing to be Christians but not wanting their faith to interrupt their lives. Jesus calls them out in verse 17, saying: “You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.”

Jesus was greatly disappointed in their spiritual immaturity, but the great news is that he didn’t desire to punish them; he wanted to correct them.  He wanted to see them repent. He wanted them to get it right. He wants the same for us today. He was disciplining them by his rebuke.

Hebrews 12 includes an important passage on discipline that ends with this encouragement: “we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness.  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.” (verses 9-11).

If you’re experiencing the Lord’s discipline in your life, take heart; it’s evidence that he loves you and wants you to have greater fellowship with him.  “Here I am!” he says in Revelation 3:20, the verse immediately following the verse at the beginning of this week’s devotion, “I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and fellowship with that person, and they with me.” His discipline is for our good.

Lord, train me by your discipline that I might share in your holiness and grow in faith and fellowship with you.

Having begun as a guest speaker in 2005, Dan was appointed Interim Pastor in 2008 and has been serving Maple Root Baptist ever since. As a small group leader and Chaplin for the Connecticut Tigers, Dan has a heart for the lost and the God that saves them.

Dan Kinnaman

Pastor, Maple Root Baptist Church