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 Search Me

 Psalm 139: 23,24

 "Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting."

These are the verses that ran through my mind when I was asked recently how I take correction. I probably would have reacted in the flesh, years ago, but Iíve realized that God has been changing me. My first response has become, although not always, Is there a reason for someone to condemn or accuse? Then I ask God to reveal to me any issues I need to deal with.

It was because of that question that I wondered about our response to chastening, rebuke and correction from God and from other people, and how we are to respond. And what happens if we refuse to be corrected or our attitudes are ungodly? What happens if we view ungodliness and sin in others as good or acceptable, if itís mingled with truth? Are we then like-minded in sin and just as guilty of those sins?

2 Timothy 3:16,17

 "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works."

 Our desire has to start with wanting God to search us, as we seek to become more like Him.

Psalm 139:1

"And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God."

Romans 8:27

"O Lord, thou hast searched me, and known me."

Proverbs 20:27

" The spirit of man is the candle of the Lord, searching all the inward parts of the belly."

Psalm 44:21

"Shall not God search this out? for He knoweth the secrets of the heart."

Jeremiah 17:9,10

" The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings."

Lamentations 3:40

"Let us search and try our ways, and turn again to the Lord."

The problem with God searching our hearts is that invariably the Holy Spirit recognizes and exposes the sin that we are caught in, often unawares, and He then moves to convict and correct us. We have a choice to make whether to accept that chastening or reject it. What should our attitudes be?

Psalm 94:12

" Blessed is the man whom thou chastenest, O Lord, and teachest him out of thy law."

Job 5:17,18

" Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty: For He maketh sore, and bindeth up: He woundeth, and His hands make whole."

Proverbs 3:11,12

"My son, despise not the chastening of the Lord; neither be weary of his correction: For whom the Lord loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth."

Deuteronomy 8:5,6

"Thou shalt also consider in thine heart, that, as a man chasteneth his son, so the Lord thy God chasteneth thee. Therefore thou shalt keep the commandments of the Lord thy God, to walk in his ways, and to fear Him."

Itís often difficult to take correction and rebuke, and to even acknowledge that weíve sinned. However, God expects certain responses from those who love Him.

Hebrews 12:11

"Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby."

Jeremiah 10:24

" O Lord, correct me, but with judgment; not in thine anger, lest thou bring me to nothing."

Hebrews 12:5-8

"And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons."

Revelation 3:19

" As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent."

Psalm 39:18

"For I will declare mine iniquity; I will be sorry for my sin."

As God changes us, our attitude towards sin changes. So often when weíre met with rebukes and unfair attitudes by others, it is so easy to sin and retaliate with words. Resolving to not sin becomes an "audible" thought in our minds, which says, " Iím not going to sin". God changes us over the years so that we are able to respond to others in a way that honors Him. What happens though, if a person wants to reject direct rebuke or correction from the Holy Spirit? What if God uses others to rebuke and correct and we reject that as well?

Proverbs 8:33

" Hear instruction, and be wise, and refuse it not."

Proverbs 9:8,9

"Reprove not a scorner, lest he hate thee: rebuke a wise man, and he will love thee. Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be yet wiser: teach a just man, and he will increase in learning."

Proverbs 15:10

" Correction is grievous unto him that forsaketh the way: and he that hateth reproof shall die.

Proverbs 15: 12

" A scorner loveth not one that reproveth him: neither will he go unto the wise."

Jeremiah 2:19

"Thine own wickedness shall correct thee, and thy backslidings shall reprove thee: know therefore and see that it is an evil thing and bitter, that thou hast forsaken the Lord thy God, and that my fear is not in thee, saith the Lord God of hosts."

1 Corinthians 11: 31, 32

"For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world."

 

What is the responsibility of believers towards one another, when God teaches us to recognize error and sin? Are we to rebuke and correct? What should the attitude of all involved be?

2 Timothy 4:2

" Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine."

Galatians 6:1

" Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted."

Also Matthew 7:1-5

Luke 17:3

" Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him."

1 Timothy 5:20

"Them that sin rebuke before all, that others also may fear."

When we deal with one another it must be with love and humility. 1 Corinthians 13:1-13 speaks of the need of Charity and the result of not having it.

Also:

1 Peter 1:22

" Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently."

 1 Peter 3: 8-12

"Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing. For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile: Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it. For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and His ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil."

What happens if a person does not listen to rebuke or correction and deals with others with ungodly attitudes? How can we tell if chastening is of God or the flesh, or is simply an attack to try and cause us to sin?

James 3: 17,18

" But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace."

James 3: 8-10

"But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be."

James 3: 13-15

Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom. But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish."

Titus 3:2

"To speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers, but gentle, shewing all meekness unto all men."

Ephesians 4:29

" Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers."

What is in a man will always come out and will be exposed:

Matthew 12:37

"For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned."

Titus 3: 8-11

"This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men. But avoid foolish questions and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain. A man that is an heretick after the first and second admonition reject; Knowing that he that is such is subverted, and sinneth, being condemned of himself."

Luke 6:45

"A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh."

Galatians 5:22

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christís have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another."

Isaiah 5:20,21,23

" Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight! ... Which justify the wicked for reward, and take away the righteousness of the righteous from him!

Proverbs 24:24, 25

"He that saith unto the wicked, Thou art righteous; him shall the people curse, nations shall abhor him: But to them that rebuke him shall be delight, and a good blessing shall come upon them."

Proverbs 28:13

"He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy."

Proverbs 28:4

"They that forsake the law praise the wicked: but such as keep the law contend with them."

Proverbs 14:7

"Go from the presence of a foolish man, when thou perceivest not in him the lips of knowledge."

Psalm 64: 5, 8

"They encourage themselves in an evil matter: they commune of laying snares privily; they say, Who shall see them? " "So they shall make their own tongue to fall upon themselves: all that see them shall flee away."

Jeremiah 5:3

"O Lord, are not thine eyes upon the truth? thou hast stricken them, but they have not grieved; thou hast consumed them, but they have refused to receive correction they have made their faces harder than a rock; they have refused to return."

Also Jeremiah 5:25,26

We must therefore take great pains to deal with one another in Biblical fashion. We have a responsibility to one another. If we truly love one another weíre going to want to help each other grow and deal with sin issues. To do that may make the difference of where a person spends eternity. We are enabled through Christ to deal with these issues by taking hold of the following:

Colossians 3:12-14

"Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.

And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness."

 

All Scripture is From The Authorized King James Bible

Copyright . All articles are the sole property of SeekGod.ca and Vicky Dillen. All Scripture King James Version unless otherwise stated.

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