Grace and Truth
Every believer has a choice regarding the system that they will learn from in life
In our study of the doctrine of suffering, last time we left off with the idea that negative or wrong decisions result in self-induced misery that can be classified as deliberate wrong actions that bring self-induced misery or impulsive wrong actions that come from self-gratification and result in self-indulged misery.
Deliberate wrong actions originate from wrong motives, decisions, and actions that result in creating self-induced misery.
Impulsive actions are spontaneous and impetuous so they often circumvent motives and decisions and generally result from thinking related to lust and self-gratification or are related to some system of locked-in arrogance that causes subjectivity.
Self-imposed misery is suffering caused by bad thinking and wrong motivation. It is also suffering caused by ignorance of doctrine and self-deception.
Weather the source is ignorance or cognizance no one gets away with anything.
Hosea 8:7; "They who sow to the wind shall also reap the whirlwind."
Col 3:25; "For he who does wrong will receive the consequences of that wrong which he has done, without exception.
This principle is also stated in Rom 14:12;and 1Pet 4:5;
Self-induced suffering follows the policy of wrong thinking, wrong motives, wrong decisions, and wrong actions in life. Sometimes it's a matter of a lack of common sense, or of bad judgment, or not knowing or accepting one's own limitations.
Good decisions result in blessing from God; bad decisions result in suffering that is either self-imposed, self-induced, or self-indulged.
Based on this, we make ourselves miserable and manufacture our own suffering and self-induced misery from our own negative or wrong thinking that results in negative or wrong motivation that leads to negative or wrong decisions, that are performed in negative or deliberately wrong actions, and impulsive wrong actions.
There are at least seven categories of wrong decisions that produce self-induced misery under the law of volitional responsibility.
Wrong decisions based on sin, wrong decisions based on human good, wrong decisions resulting in evil, wrong decisions based on erroneous emotions.
Emotion is one of the worst reasons to make a decision because emotions cannot think, cannot rationalize, and have no common sense.
Wrong decisions based on bad judgment is a very common cause of suffering and is due to lack of common sense, total disorientation to life, and not knowing your limitations.
The last two categories are wrong decisions based on lust, and wrong decisions based on false teaching.
It is not possible to simply apply rebound to all these categories. You can't apply rebound alone to bad judgment. Most who have bad judgment don't even know it. You have to apply rebound and follow it up with persistent and consistent PMA of Bible Doctrine for the renovation of the thinking. The wrong ideas have to be replaced by ideas that are consistent with God's' word.
The Book of Proverbs is a compilation of good and bad thoughts, motives, decisions, and actions in life. Proverbs teaches the believer how to live without having to learn the hard way from mistakes and thereby avoid suffering that is self-induced, self-imposed, and self-indulged.
Most wrong decisions reflect indifference or negative volition toward Bible doctrine, as mentioned in many verses in Prov 1 and Prov 8.
Suffering from self-induced misery and divine discipline is illustrated by Prov 22:8; "He who sows wickedness reaps trouble, and the rod of His punishment will surely come." Gal 6:7; says the same thing.
Prov 2:10-17; teaches that good decisions always result from metabolized doctrine that is ready to be applied, This metabolized doctrine is translated from the Hebrew word "chakmah" as "wisdom" is the equivalent of the Greek word "Sophia" in the New Testament.
Bad decisions that cause self-induced misery are related to sin; the seven worst sins are stated in Prov 6:16-19;
Prov 12:13; "In the transgression of the lips (the sins of the speech) is an evil snare (resulting in triple-compound discipline), but the righteous will escape this trouble (misery)." Every time anyone judges, maligns or gossips they have manufactured misery for themselves.
The "righteous " in the context is not someone who is perfect, but someone who doctrine and does not gossip, malign, or judge others.
Prov 13:20, "He who walks with the wise men will be wise, but the companion of fools will suffer misery."
We make good and bad decisions with regard to the people with whom we associate. If you associate with the wrong people, you're making a decision that will eventually cause you a tremendous amount of unhappiness!
Prov 15:17, "Better is a dish of garden greens where love is than a prime steak with hatred."
Prov 15:33, "Occupation with the Lord is the instruction for wisdom, and before honor comes humility."
Good decisions based on humility will eventually lead to honor and include the use of virtue-love as a problem-solving device.
Other passages that address this include Prov 16:18, 17:1, 13, 20, 19:8, 15, 16, 19, 23, 25, 20:19, 21:9, 19, 21, 22:8, 23:9, 27-30, 24:17-18, 25:16, and Prov 29:1.
If the believer, through the function of negative volition, persists in making wrong decisions, God will add the pressure of divine discipline. Divine discipline comes from God's love through his grace policy. This means that there is always grace before judgment in divine discipline.
When we, through our wrong decisions, put ourselves into a difficult situation, there is no grace or love involved. We are simply reaping the consequences of our bad decisions.
The principle of both warning and intensive discipline is found in Heb 12:6, "Whom the Lord loves He disciplines (with warning discipline), and He punishes every son whom He receives (with intensive discipline)."
Job 5:17-18, "Behold, happy is the man whom the Lord reproves (warning discipline), and does not despise the discipline (intensive discipline) from the Almighty. He inflicts pain (warning discipline). He bandages the wound (rebound). He wounds (intensive discipline), and His hands heal."
Warning discipline is also taught in Rev 3:20; the purpose of warning discipline is for the believer to recall the principle of 1 John 1:9; and use it. Warning discipline is God's grace and is designed to motivate rebound.
Punitive preventative suffering is the same as warning discipline and intensive discipline in restraining sin and motivating rebound.
Intensive discipline is found in Rev 3:19; "Those who I love I reprimand (warning discipline) and I punish (intensive discipline). Therefore be zealous (motivation from warning discipline or intensive discipline to rebound) and change your thinking."
This is also taught in Psa 38:1-14.
The third category of divine discipline is dying discipline, or the sin unto death. This is when God has no more use for the believer on the earth and takes them home. 1John 5:16; Psa 118:17-18; "The Lord has disciplined me severely (intensive discipline), but He has not given me over to death (sin unto death)."
Phil 3:19; "Whose end of life is ruin (dying discipline), whose god is their physical desires." Rev 3:16; "Therefore, because you are lukewarm (in the cosmic system), neither cold or hot, I am about to vomit you out of My mouth."
All three categories of divine discipline are found in 1 Cor 11:30-31; "For this cause many are weak (warning discipline), and sick (intensive discipline), and many sleep (sin unto death). But if we would judge ourselves (rebound), we should not be judged."
Divine discipline can also take the form of national suffering from the cycles of discipline and the four generation curse.
In all categories of suffering believers must always keep in view the grace principle that God never gives the believer more suffering than he can bear, 1 Cor 10:13;
It is the believer making wrong decisions from a position of weakness that accrues more suffering than he can bear. We can all be self-destructive in this way because of how the law of volitional responsibility works in the life.
When out of fellowship and without instant rebound, we manufacture our own self-induced suffering that can be greater than we can bear. Any suffering left over after rebound is designed for blessing so once the believer has acknowledged the sin, God must often reduce the suffering to what the believer can bear.
What God does not remove in suffering He intends for us to bear under the principle that all suffering is designed for blessing.
The believer chooses the system that they will learn from in life. In the school of hard knocks, the believer with very little doctrine learns mostly from punitive suffering. In this case the believer's learning efficiency is very low.
In the school of Bible doctrine, the believer inside God's power system under perception, metabolization, and application of doctrine, can advance to spiritual maturity, using Bible doctrine and a minimum of suffering. In this case the believer's learning efficiency is very high.
The principle is that no believer can pass a specific category of suffering for blessing until he has first of all attained the capacity from spiritual advance.
That means that all three stages of spiritual maturity must be attained prior to passing the corresponding category of suffering for blessing. Suffering for blessing from God is not arbitrary it is part of the Protocol Plan for every believer.
This means that no believer can pass test of providential preventative suffering until he has attained spiritual self-esteem. No believer can pass momentum testing until he has attained spiritual autonomy. No believer can pass evidence testing until he has attained spiritual maturity.
Only spiritual self-esteem is qualified for providential preventative suffering, only spiritual autonomy is qualified for momentum testing and only spiritual maturity is qualified for evidence testing.
Spiritual self-esteem is the assertion of metabolized doctrine in the stream of consciousness and the believer's choice to apply it in their own thinking. When the believer has the capacity to apply the doctrine it is then tested with the corresponding category of suffering for blessing.
The application of Bible doctrine in suffering for blessing gives power and strength to spiritual self-esteem. Spiritual self-esteem without this power is vulnerable to arrogant self-confidence and that is the reason why it is called providential preventative suffering.
Spiritual self-esteem leads to spiritual autonomy that must tested by momentum testing. God does not give us momentum testing until we have attained spiritual autonomy that is based upon spiritual self-esteem plus the advance through providential preventative suffering.
The suffering for blessing of the momentum testing of spiritual autonomy leads to spiritual maturity. Once we reach spiritual maturity, we'll receive unexplained and underserved suffering in our lives. This third category is suffering for blessing only comes to mature believers as the extension of the angelic conflict.
This is where believers are entered to testify as evidence for the Prosecution in the rebuttal phase of Satan's appeal trial. So this category is called evidence testing.
The cause of the suffering is unknown and undeserved, as in the case of Job, but the power to deal with the suffering has been provided through preventative suffering plus momentum testing.
© Copyright 2007, Michael Lemmon Bible Ministries. World Rights Reserved.
This document was created on 5/18/2011
© Copyright 2007, Michael Lemmon Bible Ministries. World Rights Reserved. This document was created on 5/18/2011