The question to be answered in each of our lives is, are we willing to allow the chastisement of the Lord in our lives? Paul declares:
“But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.” Hebrews 12:8
This is a very important statement. If we do not allow God's chastening in our lives, then we are bastard children. The word bastard means “an illegitimate child, one not born in wedlock.”
How do we refuse chastisement? We refuse chastisement when we do not accept God's correction. We refuse chastisement when we refuse to accept the work God is trying to do in our lives. We refuse chastisement when we do not desire to change. In verse 7 we find:
“If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?” Hebrews 12:7
For us to endure chastening, we must allow God to change our hearts to make us more like Him. When we were corrected by our fathers we either changed and became fine, young men, or we rebelled and ended up in trouble - - - on drugs, alcohol, foul mouthed, in prison, in debt, or just not blessed - - - because of the rebellion in our lives. If we accept the change God is trying to do in our lives, then God can bless us. Otherwise, we are bastards, those who cannot share the priviliges of God's children.
The consequences of a bastard is also mentioned in the Old Testament as an example written for our admonition upon whom the ends of the world are come, I Corinthians 1:11. In the book of Genesis, Chapter 19, Moses relates:
“And Lot went up out of Zoar, and dwelt in the mountain, and his two daughters with him; for he feared to dwell in Zoar: and he dwelt in a cave, he and his two daughters. And the firstborn said unto the younger, Our father is old, and there is not a man in the earth to come in unto us after the manner of all the earth: Come, let us make our father drink wine, and we will lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father. And they made their father drink wine that night: and the firstborn went in, and lay with her father; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose. And it came to pass on the morrow, that the firstborn said unto the younger, Behold, I lay yesternight with my father: let us make him drink wine this night also; and go thou in, and lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father. And they made their father drink wine that night also: and the younger arose, and lay with him; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose. Thus were both the daughters of Lot with child by their father. And the firstborn bare a son, and called his name Moab: the same is the father of the Moabites unto this day. And the younger, she also bare a son, and called his name Benammi: the same is the father of the children of Ammon unto this day,” Genesis 19:30-38.
With this background then the words of Moses in the book of Deuteronomy reveals:
A bastard shall not enter into the congregation of the LORD; even to his tenth generation shall he not enter into the congregation of the LORD.” Deuteronomy 23:2
The definition in this verse in the Old Testament of a bastard is a child of incest, an illigitimate child.
As we continue in Deuteronomy 23:3 we find:
“An Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter into the congregation of the LORD; even to their tenth generation shall they not enter into the congregation of the LORD for ever:
Moses relates the Ammonites and Moabites shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord forever. How serious is the Lord's pronouncement in Hebrews 12:7–8? If we do not endure chastisement, then we are as the bastard descendants of Ammon and Moab and will never enter into the congregation of the Lord FOREVER!
How prevalent is this rebellion today in the church system? This has spawned a lukewarm church who will not endure the chastening of God. As we learn in Numbers 21:21 – 24, Israel encountered the Ammonites again.
“And Israel sent messengers unto Sihon king of the Amorites, saying, Let me pass through thy land: we will not turn into the fields, or into the vineyards; we will not drink of the waters of the well: but we will go along by the king’s high way, until we be past thy borders. And Sihon would not suffer Israel to pass through his border: but Sihon gathered all his people together, and went out against Israel into the wilderness: and he came to Jahaz, and fought against Israel. And Israel smote him with the edge of the sword, and possessed his land from Arnon unto Jabbok, even unto the children of Ammon: for the border of the children of Ammon was strong.”
Israel did not go beyond the borders of Ammon because the Ammonites were strong. In Deuteronomy 2:16 – 19 we see more about the Ammonites:
“So it came to pass, when all the men of war were consumed and dead from among the people, That the LORD spake unto me, saying, Thou art to pass over through Ar, the coast of Moab, this day: And when thou comest nigh over against the children of Ammon, distress them not, nor meddle with them: for I will not give thee of the land of the children of Ammon any possession; because I have given it unto the children of Lot for a possession.”
The children were commanded not to go with the Ammonites, nor to meedle with them. As we continue to look at the characteristics of the Ammonites, we need to look at Judges 10:6-18.
“And the children of Israel did evil again in the sight of the LORD, and served Baalim, and Ashtaroth, and the gods of Syria, and the gods of Zidon, and the gods of Moab, and the gods of the children of Ammon, and the gods of the Philistines, and forsook the LORD, and served not him. And the anger of the LORD was hot against Israel, and he sold them into the hands of the Philistines, and into the hands of the children of Ammon. Moreover the children of Ammon passed over Jordan to fight also against Judah, and against Benjamin, and against the house of Ephraim; so that Israel was sore distressed. And the children of Israel cried unto the LORD, saying, We have sinned against thee, both because we have forsaken our God, and also served Baalim. And they put away the strange gods from among them, and served the LORD: and his soul was grieved for the misery of Israel. Then the children of Ammon were gathered together, and encamped in Gilead. And the children of Israel assembled themselves together, and encamped in Mizpeh. And the people and princes of Gilead said one to another, What man is he that will begin to fight against the children of Ammon? He shall be head over all the inhabitants of Gilead.” Judges 10:6-18
Israel had come to the place where they were associating themselves with all the idols and false religions of the gods of the nations around them. They had been commanded by God not to meddle with the Ammonites. But God's commandment was ignored. Are you meddling with the associations of Ammon and other false religions today? As Israel, we must recognize the errors of our ways. We, too, as Israel, must acknowledge that we have sinned against God and served Baalim. As Israel, we must determine to put away the strange gods from our lives and serve the Lord with our whole heart and soul. What are the enemies in our lives that we must overcome? They could be anger, pride, lust, hatred, love of money, selfishness, unforgiveness, and unright-eousness, just to name a few.
In the book of Judges, Chapter 11, we discover a man by the name of Jephthah. As we read this chapter, we discover Jephthah became a mighty warrior against the Ammonites. The name Jephthah means “whom God sets free.” Even though Jephthah was the son of an harlot (v. 1), he broke through that bondage, and became a mighty man of valour. Jeremiah further tells us about the Ammonites:
“Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will punish all them which are circumcised with the uncircumcised; Egypt, and Judah, and Edom, and the children of Ammon, and Moab, and all that are in the utmost corners, that dwell in the wilderness: for all these nations are uncircumcised, and all the house of Israel are uncircumcised in the heart.” Jeremiah 9:25-26
It is easy for many to have their eyes on those of the world who are not circumcised in their hearts. But our concern should be looking in the mirror, and allowing the circumcising chastisement of our hearts. We must allow God's cutting away the covering in our lives, to unveil His Spirit, that we may enter into the one hundred fold realm, the double portion outporing of His Spirit upon all the flesh in our lives.
The name Lot means a covering, a veil. So many in the church system today have a covering or veil over their minds. This veil will never be removed if there is no going on in their lives. But sadly, many will not allow the necessary life-changing chastisement in their lives. Because of this they are bastard children as Ammon and Moab. How can we become what God wants us to be without changing? We must allow His cutting away of this old, fleshly man, and let God reign on the throne of our minds, instead of our own fleshly desires. Listen to the words of Nehemiah:
“In those days also saw I Jews that had married wives of Ashdod, of Ammon, and of Moab: And their children spake half in the speech of Ashdod, and could not speak in the Jews’ language, but according to the language of each people. And I contended with them, and cursed them, and smote certain of them, and plucked off their hair, and made them swear by God, saying, Ye shall not give your daughters unto their sons, nor take their daughters unto your sons, or for yourselves. Did not Solomon king of Israel sin by these things? Yet among many nations was there no king like him, who was beloved of his God, and God made him king over all Israel: nevertheless even him did outlandish women cause to sin. Shall we then hearken unto you to do all this great evil, to transgress against our God in marrying strange wives? Nehemiah 13:23-27
Brothers and sisters, we must be careful not to marry (become one with those who are not teaching the pure Word of God). Many are teaching the precepts and doctrines of men, and not from the heart of God. We must also not marry those whose heart is not with God,
Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?” II Corinthians 6:14
In First Kings we are warned by God:
“But king Solomon loved many strange women, together with the daughter of Pharaoh, women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Zidonians, and Hittites; of the nations concerning which the LORD said unto the children of Israel, Ye shall not go in to them, neither shall they come in unto you: for surely they will turn away your heart after their gods: Solomon clave unto these in love. And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his heart. For it came to pass, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods: and his heart was not perfect with the LORD his God, as was the heart of David his father.” I Kings 11:1-4
The lukewarm message in many churches today does not require God's children to be chastised. Many declare, “The Lord has done it all for me.” This is an easy message with no need for change. Hear the words of Isaiah:
“Judgment also will I lay to the line, and righteousness to the plummet: and the hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies, and the waters shall overflow the hiding place. And your covenant with death shall be disannulled, and your agreement with hell shall not stand; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, then ye shall be trodden down by it.” Isaiah 28:17-18
These easy messages will slowly pull you away to serve the false gods of Ammon and Moab and all other false religions.
In II Kings, we see the young king Josiah putting away all the false gods. This, we too must do.
“And the high places that were before Jerusalem, which were on the right hand of the mount of corruption, which Solomon the king of Israel had builded for Ashtoreth the abomination of the Zidonians, and for Chemosh the abomination of the Moabites, and for Milcom the abomination of the children of Ammon, did the king defile. And he brake in pieces the images, and cut down the groves, and filled their places with the bones of men.” II Kings 23:13-14
“And the king (Josiah) sent, and they gathered unto him all the elders of Judah and of Jerusalem. And the king went up into the house of the LORD, and all the men of Judah and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem with him, and the priests, and the prophets, and all the people, both small and great: and he read in their ears all the words of the book of the covenant which was found in the house of the LORD.
And the king stood by a pillar, and made a covenant before the LORD, to walk after the LORD, and to keep his commandments and his testimonies and his statutes with all their heart and all their soul, to perform the words of this covenant that were written in this book. And all the people stood to the covenant.” II Kings 23:1-4
Are you ready to fulfill your destiny, my brothers and sisters? We must brake down any images in our lives that are not of God. We must not associate ourselves in any way with the Ammonites and the Moabites and other false religions.
We must become a separated people unto our God, and allow His changing and cutting circumcision to do its eternal work in our lives. We must separate ourselves from those who do not wish to wholly follow the Lord, so that we may receive the privileges of God's children.
By Robert Bixler Pcwoodworking@aol.com
The Salvation Message
The salvation message has gone throughout the earth. Many, praise God, have chosen this new birth.
But, beloved children of God, it is time! Yes, even past time, to go beyond the milk of the Word, Hebrews 5:13. Has it not been told you, have you not heard that every one who uses milk is unskillful in the Word?
Listen, My children! Take special heed! It is time, yes, even past time, to move on from the first principles to the meat of My Word, Hebrews 6:1.
It is time to sincerely desire the pure Word of God that you may grow thereby. It is time to partake of the meat of the Word, something you can get your teeth into and chew, Hebrews 5:14.
Initial Salvation, My children, is not enough. Yes, there are multitudes today crying, “Salvation!” Who are these, you ask?
These are they who must endure the great tribulation and make their robes white in the blood of the Lamb, Revelation 7:14. These are the remnant seed who keep My commandments, but have the “salvation only” of My testimony, Revelation 12:17. These are those who must endure to the end to be completely saved.
Do not despair, My loved ones! There is hope! The answer is to begin today, to not only fill yourself with My Word, but begin to Study My Word as your daily bread, II Timothy 2:15.
It is time, Yes, even past time, for you to not only fill yourself and study but to diligently Search My Word, John 5:39. This is partaking of the meat of My Word.
My little ones, climb out of your crib
and begin today to
walk on the water of My Word,
I Kings 2:4 and Isaiah 2:3.
How to Study the Bible
Within God’s Word,
there are 4 levels of understanding.
Each one is true, but each progresses to more understanding and each is for you personally in progressing in your walk towards the Kingdom of God.
1 First we fill ourselves by reading the Word.
2 Second, we begin to go beyond the simple reading of the Word, to begin to sincerely desire more of the sincere milk of the Word. At this point we begin to see more than what is written on the page. We begin to see hints of more than just a feel-good milk meaning.
3 Third, we begin to desire to study the meaning of the words that the Lord puts on our heart using Bible Helps such as the Strong's Concordance. At this point, we are not satisfied with just the milk understanding, but we desire to know more and more.
4 Fourth and finally, we begin to have an unquenchable desire to dig deep and search out the hidden meanings of God’s concepts in His Word.
Using these 4 layers of understanding, you can determine where are you in this progression?
1 Are you at the milk stage, just reading the simple message of the Bible as stories?
2 Or have you begun to desire the sincere milk that quenches your thirst?
3 Or have you begun to study the hints the Lord is quickening to your heart, and dipping this bread into the water of the Word by going deeper than just reading the Word, to more understanding.
4 Or have you got a hunger that cannot be filled with milk, water, or bread, and feel that you must search deeply for the hidden meanings.
If you are truly desiring with all your heart to go beyond the milk, the sincere milk, and the bread of the Word, then the Hebrew Aleph Bet and the Strong’s Concordance and other study helps are the KEYS that will unlock the doors and lead you to the ever-deepening, meat of God’s Word. Come and sit at His table He has set before you.
As one level leads us to desire more, the next level is progressively more specific, and more revealing that the previous one. And as one level leads us to a desire for deeper understanding that what it contains, the next and deeper level is only revealed once the “clothing” of the previous level or layer has been removed, until finally we get to the very essence of deeper understanding.
Each of the 4 levels incorporates all the other levels according to your level of understanding on a concept.
This too is an ever on-going process and is marvelous in its working toward the deep, deeper, deepest things of God. Praise the Lord!