Bible Truth Restored

Bible Truth Restored

If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.           1 Peter 4:11

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Discipline a Kindness

The followers of Jesus were and are, firstly, “disciples.” The new name given to them at Antioch made no difference to their status in Christ, neither did it alter in any way the manner in which their characters had to be forged and shaped after the image of him whom they followed. They were still disciples - that is, subject to the necessary discipline and self-denial which was and is an indispensable part of the believer’s training. To be a disciple one must be rebuked, for there is no discipline without rebuke. Discipline means literally “training teaching,” and as the human mind is not readily responsive to the commands of godliness, mere pleading is not sufficient to cause it to bend in submission to the obedience of Christ. Our continual reading of the prophets, gospel narratives, and epistles indicates that mere soft-spoken entreaty is not sufficient to convince us of our sinfulness.            

“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked ...” is not a flattering comment, but it does carry enough force to stimulate an immediate reaction. We shall either reject it as unacceptable and push it from our minds, or believe it. If we believe it, we shall be the more ready to commit ourselves into the hand of him ourselves, as he is outspoken in his condemnation of our natural inclinations.

“Let the righteous smite me, it shall be a kindness,” says the Psalmist. And who more righteous to smite than Jesus, who, knowing the heart of man and what is in man, himself learned obedience by the things which he suffered? In the days of his ministry, the Lord used many forms of rebuke; and it was not only persons he rebuked. He rebuked nature, he rebuked demon-possession and on one occasion rebuked a fever! There is food for thought here. But it is some of his rebukes to persons that we now mainly examine, striving to discern the lesson for ourselves, and keeping to the forefront of our minds his promise: “As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten.”

Last Bulletin

Despite the essential severity of some of the Master’s rebukes, they were still given with a completely sympathetic approach consistent with his knowledge of the weakness of the vessels he was dealing with. “Resist the devil, and he will flee from you...