Last time I mentioned that God will never punish you, as a believer, for your sins. NEVER! If He does, then Jesus was not punished in your place on the cross. But He does still discipline us. So what’s the difference?
Punishment is always rooted in God’s wrath and the end is death. On the other hand, discipline is rooted in God’s love and the outcome is always for our good. Hebrews 12 is a good place to go to understand this. Hebrews 12:6 tells us that “the Lord disciplines the one he loves…” And so discipline is always an act of love toward us. Verse 10 then says that this discipline is “for our good.” How so? It goes on to say in the rest of verse 10 and then in verse 11 – “that we may share his holiness” and experience “the peaceful fruit of righteousness.” Verse 12 adds that He disciplines us so that “what is lame may…be healed.”
God never motivates us to obey by the fear of punishment. Love does not punish.
If I was engaged in sin and wanted to turn from it and bring it into the light – but knew that doing so was the beginning of punishment, I would likely continue in sin. At least sin promises pleasure – even if it doesn’t deliver. Punishment never promises pleasure.
Next – if punishment is gone, so is fear.