God’s Correction Is Not Punishment
By Rick Warren
“Let God train you, for he is doing what any loving father does for his children." Hebrews 12:7 (TLB)
Do you know the difference between correction and punishment?
Punishment is a penalty for the past, and correction is training for the future. Correction is discipline, not punishment.
When something bad happens, we often think God is punishing us when God is actually just correcting us. How can we know this? Because God doesn't punish his children. Jesus has already taken all of the punishment for every sin on the cross.
Every sin you have ever committed and will ever commit has already been paid for. So God doesn't punish you for your sins—but he does correct you. His correction is the evidence of his love, because he doesn’t want you to keep going the wrong direction.
One way God corrects us is through pain. Hebrews 12:8-10 says, “If God doesn’t discipline you as he does all of his children, it means that you are illegitimate and are not really his children at all. Since we respected our earthly fathers who disciplined us, shouldn’t we submit even more to the discipline of the Father of our spirits, and live forever? For our earthly fathers disciplined us for a few years, doing the best they knew how. But God’s discipline is always good for us, so that we might share in his holiness” (NLT).
God doesn't correct those who aren't his children. As a father, I didn’t correct other people's kids, but I certainly corrected mine. I did it for their good because I wanted them to know the joy of following God and doing things his way.
God wants the same for you if you have chosen to follow him and are his child.
Following Jesus means cooperating when God brings any kind of correction into your life—not because he wants to punish you but because he loves you. When God corrects you, he isn't mad at you. He's mad about you!
The Bible says, “Let God train you, for he is doing what any loving father does for his children" (Hebrews 12:7 TLB).
God’s correction is for your good, even when it comes with pain.
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