Thursday May 2, 2019
The sons of God do the will of their Father.
The authority and position of Jesus as the Messiah, as the Son of God, was manifested by His works. Jesus said that John the Baptists position and calling were manifested by John’s own works. Jesus said that we manifest the glory of the Father, and therefore our own position by our works.
Just as the priests and elders spent their lives in professing to be God’s people, but did not do the work that their position required as priests and elders, so was the second son in the parable who said he would go and work in the vineyard but did not.
In every generation there are many men who are like this.
All of us in this ministry are exceptional at reading the scripture and hearing it explained. We must never think that with this our work is done.
Our good forwardness in hearing what God’s will does not take the place in our doing it. Our great knowledge does not absolve us from doing what it instructs us to do.
2TI 3:16 All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness;
2TI 3:17 that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.
Training in righteousness means training us to live righteously. With teaching, correction and reproof met with humility, and training in righteousness we will be adequate, equipped for every good work.
“adequate” - artios = in appropriate condition. Here it is the state of a person antecedent or preparative for conduct.
From the root ar meaning joining together, joining on, or fitting. It was used by Greek philosophers of even numbers, which in the reckoning leave no remainders. We could say that the word of God makes us fit for God’s work and that without the word of God we would not be fit.
Equipped is a word that is a derivative of artios.
“equipped” - exartizo = perfectly to prepare, to complete for a certain purpose, fully to equip.
To a Greek reader, these two words together would impress upon them the emphasis of being in the proper position and condition to do something.
It would be like performing a complex task with the knowledge and skill that comes from having done the task many times before and mastering it. Such a person gets all the tools and spaces ready so that he can complete the task proficiently and quickly. Another man, setting upon the same task with no expertise will find himself without the proper tools, lacking the proper space, confused at various points in the process, and what will his product look like?
If we have exceptional hearing and interpreting of the word, it has the purpose of putting us in the appropriate condition and perfectly preparing us to do God’s good work.
We can easily congratulate ourselves that we have much more knowledge than most, and when none of it is applied to life and no work is done, we continue to congratulate ourselves.
We must deal honestly with ourselves and not stay among the mere preliminaries of obedience. God has enjoined us to think right and do His will. Remember the parable of the vineyard workers:
'Why have you been standing here idle all day long?'
'Because no one hired us.'
'You too go into the vineyard.'
Which of us as parents would be satisfied after finding out that our child had not done what we had told them to, they responded, “I promised I would.”? We would not only be angry; we would wonder if some moral perversion had crept into their little brain.
A man walking by the vineyard, seeing one son in the field; dressed for work, under the hot sun sweating and toiling; and the other son lounging by the side of the road, proclaiming what a fine father he had, what a pleasure it was to work for him, and expressing his hope that the harvest would be good this year - the observer wouldn’t have the slightest difficulty in forming a judgment of the two sons.
All of us sons are called to be witnesses for Christ. Which son should the world see?
That’s not a scare tactic, but a reality. We are to serve God in this life. We have only one Master. Our allegiance is to be undivided.
The second son flat out refuses. He doesn’t give an excuse like in the parable of the invited dinner guests. One might conclude that at least he’s honest, but if you are honest and openly heading to perdition, does that make it right or wise?
And always a good reminder, the sons of God are disciplined by the Father.
HEB 12:5 and you have forgotten the exhortation which is addressed to you as sons,
The scripture here reveals that though we are sons, we can become forgetful of that fact and consciously see ourselves as the old creature. The writer reminds them that they are sons of God and shows them that it is natural that discipline come from a father-son relationship.
The writer then quotes PRO 3:11-12 (vv. 5-6), proving two things:
1) God disciplines those whom He loves.
2) Discipline is a sign of sonship.
"My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord,
Nor faint when you are reproved by Him;
HEB 12:6 For those whom the Lord loves He disciplines,
And He scourges every son whom He receives."
The forgetfulness addressed here is the son who received discipline, changed his way, but then over time tended to forget the pain of discipline and start heading back into the sin or sins from before. It borders on the insane when we do the same thing as before and expect a different result. Therefore, we are not to regard lightly the discipline of the Lord.
The second lesson to learn is that we should not faint, meaning giving up or collapsing under the pain.
Punishment is retribution for sin and evil, and for the believer, that punishment has already been received by the Messiah on the cross.
Discipline, unlike punishment, is moral training to conform the son to the expectation of the Father.
Depending on the son and his current condition, there will be degrees of discipline. If we become very forgetful, the grace of God may discipline us more intensely. Our Father knows just what we need.
HEB 12:7 It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline?
HEB 12:8 But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons.
“discipline” - paideia = the training of a child or moral training. Reaffirms that God is dealing with them as sons.
Now, if you happened to be without discipline in your life then you’re an illegitimate son, but as partakers of discipline, you are a legitimate son. This is to give us comfort in that we have a Father, the wisest and most loving of fathers, who will train us in the ways of morality and virtue.