Proverbs (Part 031) - Pro 3:11-12


11. Pro 3:11 - "My son, despise not the chastening of the LORD; neither be weary of his correction:" A. My son, despise not the chastening of the LORD i. Chastening is not a joyous, but a grievous, experience (Heb 12:11). a. Chastening n. - The action of the verb chasten; disciplinary punishment, chastisement, correction; subduing of excess or intensity. b. Punishment is painful and therefore has the tendency to provoke resentment rather than appreciation from the receiver. c. Thus the reason that Solomon instructs us to not despise the chastening of the LORD. d. Despise v. - 1. trans. To look down upon; to view with contempt; to think scornfully or slightingly of. ii. A child whose father punishes him for his disobedience will often view that correction with contempt and scorn while his behind is stinging. a. God's children likewise look with disdain upon His discipline while they are suffering it. b. When the child later understands that the chastening of his father was for his profit (Heb 12:10), not his destruction, he then gives his father reverence (Heb 12:9). c. So it should be with Christians and their Heavenly Father. d. They must realize that God chastens them because He loves them (Heb 12:6). e. Jesus warned the church at Laodicea that "as many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent" (Rev 3:19). iii. If you "endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?" (Heb 12:7). a. A child is not a son, but a bastard, if his father chastens him not (Heb 12:8). b. Therefore, enduring chastisement from God is evidence that one is a child of God. iv. Though God's correction is not pleasant at the time, it yields "the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby" (Heb 12:11). a. That is the reason to not despise the chastening of the LORD. (i) It is for our happiness, not our hurt. (ii) It's a sign that God loves us, not loathes us. (iii) It yields a life of righteousness, not reproach. b. So the next time you are being chastened by God for your sin or foolish decisions, thank God for the rod (Job 5:17). v. What form does God's rod take? a. The LORD has numerous methods to punish his disobedient people. (i) God chastened Israel by making them wander in the wilderness for 40 years for their unbelief and rebellion. (ii) While in the wilderness, the LORD let them suffer hunger to prove their faithfulness (Deut 8:2-5). b. Men are God's hands (Psa 17:14). (i) Sometimes He uses rods in their hands to lay stripes upon His children who are in need of it. (ii) In the Davidic covenant, God promised to punish Solomon thusly if he committed iniquity, which promise was also a prophecy of the sufferings of Christ for the sins of the elect which He bore (2Sa 7:14). (iii) Jesus Christ was "stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted" (Isa 53:4) and it "pleased the LORD to bruise him" (Isa 53:10). (iv) It was God the Father who laid those stripes on Christ through a scourge in the hands of men (Luk 22:63-64; Joh 19:1-3). c. God also chastens His children by allowing them to reap what they have sown (Gal 6:7). (i) He does so by letting them "eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices" (Pro 1:31). (ii) This can be in the form of poverty coming to the sluggard (Pro 6:9-11) or alimony and STDs to the adulterer (Pro 5:10-11). (iii) This can be in the form of having rebellious and foolish children who were not trained and disciplined properly (Pro 17:25; Pro 19:13). (iv) The more grievous the sin, the more severe the punishment. (v) If we are often reproved by God and we harden our necks, we can expect sudden destruction without remedy (Pro 29:1). B. Neither be weary of his correction. i. Understanding that God's chastisement is for our good, we should not "be weary of his correction." ii. Nor should we try to avoid it when it is deserved. a. We should rather pray as Jeremiah did that God will "correct me, but with judgment; not in thine anger, lest thou bring me to nothing" (Jer 10:24). b. We can embrace God's correction while at the same time seeking mercy (Hab 3:2; Psa 38:1). iii. Though painful, God's chastening is ultimately for our good, for "when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world" (1Co 11:32). iv. But, even though the correction of the LORD is for our good, it is still painful and can be justly avoided if we judge ourselves, "for if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged" (1Co 11:31). 12. Pro 3:12 - "For whom the LORD loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth." A. For whom the LORD loveth he correcteth. i. One of the ways that God shows us that He loves us is by chastening and correcting us when we sin. a. If God loves you, He corrects you. b. Therefore, if you receive God's correction, you know that He loves you. c. An earthly father will not spank other parents' unruly children (though he may be tempted to). (i) He will only spank his own whom he loves. (ii) Likewise, God doesn't correct the spawn of Satan, but rather only His own children whom He loves. (iii) God doesn't love the wicked (Psa 5:5). (iv) Therefore, He doesn't chasten them as a father chastens his children. ii. The purpose of God's chastening of His children is for correction. a. Correct v. - 1. trans. To set right, amend (a thing); to substitute what is right for the errors or faults in (a writing, etc.). Sometimes, loosely, to point out or mark the errors in, in order to their amendment. 3. To set right, amend (a person); to cure of an error or fault; to admonish or rebuke, or to point out the errors or faults of, in order to amendment. 4. To punish for faults of character or conduct (properly, in order to amendment); to chastise, chasten. b. The Lord may punish worldly men or even kill them for their wickedness, but He doesn't do so for correction as He does for his children. c. Paul expounded on this principle in the book of Hebrews (Heb 12:6-11). iii. Those who are not chastened and corrected by the Lord are bastards, not sons. a. Korah, who was an unregenerate rebel (Jud 1:11-13), was punished by God, but not corrected in a fatherly way (Num 16:32-33). b. When the wicked are consigned to hell at death and to the lake of fire after the resurrection, they "go away into everlasting punishment" (Mat 25:46), and "shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever" (Rev 20:10). c. They are not going there for correction from a loving God, but for "everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord" (2Th 1:9) and to "drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and [they] shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb" (Rev 14:10). d. Better to be chastened in this life by a loving Father than to be tormented for all eternity by an angry Judge. B. Even as a father the son in whom he delighteth. i. God corrects His children even as (just as) an earthly father corrects his son whom he loves. a. An earthly father who loves his son will not "spareth his rod", but "chasteneth him betimes" (Pro 13:24). b. Betimes v. - 1. At an early time, period, or season; early in the year; early in life. c. Therefore, God corrects His children early and "in measure", not leaving them "altogether unpunished", but also not making "a full end" of them (Jer 30:11). ii. A father chastens his son while there is hope and will not "spare for his crying" (Pro 19:18). a. A good father will not end the punishment when the first tear drops. b. God likewise will not end His chastisement as soon as the pain is first felt, but will continue it until the lesson is learned. iii. When a child whose father loves him rebels, he will "beat him with the rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell" (Pro 23:14). iv. Our heavenly Father will likewise lay stripes on His children to deliver them from the hell on earth that awaits them if they continue in their sins. v. May God be praised that He, just as a good earthly father, chastens and lovingly corrects us to mold us into the obedient and godly children that He would have us to be.