“For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth” (Heb 12:6).
Let us for once leave behind childish stuff such as sin and behavior when we are to examine this verse. It is far much more rewarding if we go beyond the obvious, that is, our traditional thinking, outlook and consciousness. So, then, what is this? Let me rephrase the question; to where is the Spirit taking us on this thrilling faith journey? First, this is an obvious goal: Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not. Second: As He is, so are we in this world. A third one is: We ought to walk as He walks (oneness). This means faith recognition of the second goal. A fourth goal is: The worshippers once purged should have no more consciousness of sin. That ‘should’ is not something we are to fulfill. It is the Spirit’s ‘should’ and He is busy fulfilling it in each and every one of us if we just dare to believe, that is, receive.
The verse quoted displays how those goals are fulfilled in our consciousness when we through anguish finally come face to face with our nothingness and in utter surrender recognize that Christ is all in all. In that instant we are in a position to embrace the liberty in Christ which those goals are an attempt at illustrating. That list of goals is by no means exhaustive. Those are just ‘randomly’ picked for the sake of illustration. Other faith goals are for instance: We are joined one spirit with the Lord. He is the One who works and wills in us. I only do what I see my Father is doing. He is our keeper. “All those seemingly disparate parts in us which seem to be conflicting with each other are all harmonious in the Lord” (Fred Pruitt). We are made whole. We are perfected once and for all. In other words, chastisement is emancipation in disguise.
Let us once and for all discard any notions that the quoted verse has anything to do with punishment by an angry disappointed Father. He can only deal with us in mercy and grace and thus our encounters with chastisement viz. anguish and wretchedness produce faith in us. Moreover, our imagined self-reliance is exposed as nothing, and that illusion of lack is made void and empty. What is it we do need to learn in its entire efficacy? Through the cross and in Christ our humanity is restored in all its glory in the image of God. Until we learn that this is an accomplished fact we will continue to struggle towards viz. lust towards something we already are and hence God’s rest evades us, which is our harvest of righteousness and peace. The disciplined faith has learned to adamantly refuse to yield an inch to any temptation viz. lie and deceit from below, but it immediately yields to upward temptations seeing God working all things after the council of His own will.
We are transmitters of inner consciousness. If we speak law and sin it is because that is what we see. If we speak freedom from the law and grace it is because that is our inner reality. If we walk in union and no consciousness of sin that is what we will transmit. No matter what we see we are perfected in Christ. There are no residues of neither this or that in us. That old Adamic nature is gone forever, and we are dead to sin. The thing is that we do not yield in order to be replaced or try to make God fill us more or any such thing. All that is already accomplished when we came to Christ. What is our vast error is that we in our awareness still feed from the wrong tree – the tree of good and evil. That tree speaks only and can only speak death to us. So God chastises us, as it were, so that our inner consciousness is transferred to the tree of life and we become transmitters of the freedom in Christ. In Paul’s words: Christ is formed in us. The bottom line is that it is God’s love that’s leads us to repentance and thus opens up our minds to His reality.