Sons & Bastards
Heb 12:7-17 speaks of sons and bastards. The legitimate are born of the Father’s Seed & accept chastening (disciplining). Bastards born of clever oratory want heir benefits, but totally reject the possibility of chastening.
This generation has a bumper crop of the illegitimate who were attracted to the Kingdom by its perks as opposed to the glory of relational sonship with God the Father. Like Esau, they smelt tasty morsels and entered with mental assent to gain right to the banqueting table. Tragically, they have no guarantees that they’ll later find a place to repent (change their minds) though they seek it with tears. Generally, bastards will rebel rather than repent when they discover there are lulls between the 9 courses of the banquet. They consider tributes to the Host a waste of time. For them, toasts to applaud the testimonies of honored guests about their turnarounds from carnality to holiness are boring (and not worthy of an ear). Denial of the possibility of the legitimate and the illegitimate among us is spiritual blindness.
The Chastening in Heb 12:12-17 is depicted by ancient Middle East shepherding terms. Feeble/sin-prone human appendages of hands & knees that need strengthening/correction to avoid severe chattering are symbolic of sheep legs. If sheep continually strayed, shepherd would hold close then twist & sprain leg rendering sore/feeble. If senseless sheep persisted; shepherd would hold sheep closer & would jerk leg permanently dislocating it. Sins were falling short of grace = ingratitude; sexual immorality; spreading bitter speech; and refusal to pursue holiness. If you don’t think that Jesus can & will lovingly hold you close while simultaneously dislocating your leg to make sure that you don’t stray again; you don’t have a biblical concept of the Good Shepherd.