Hebrews 12:9
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live!

New Living Translation
Since we respected our earthly fathers who disciplined us, shouldn't we submit even more to the discipline of the Father of our spirits, and live forever?

English Standard Version
Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live?

New American Standard Bible
Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live?

King James Bible
Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Furthermore, we had natural fathers discipline us, and we respected them. Shouldn't we submit even more to the Father of spirits and live?

International Standard Version
Furthermore, we had earthly fathers who disciplined us, and we respected them for it. We should submit even more to the Father of our spirits and live, shouldn't we?

NET Bible
Besides, we have experienced discipline from our earthly fathers and we respected them; shall we not submit ourselves all the more to the Father of spirits and receive life?

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And if our fathers who are in the flesh have disciplined us and we did revere them, how much more ought we submit to The Father of Spirits and live?

GOD'S WORD® Translation
On earth we have fathers who disciplined us, and we respect them. Shouldn't we place ourselves under the authority of God, the father of spirits, so that we will live?

Jubilee Bible 2000
Furthermore, we have had fathers of our flesh who corrected us, and we gave them reverence; is it not much better to be in subjection to the Father of spirits, and we shall live?

King James 2000 Bible
Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh who corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?

American King James Version
Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection to the Father of spirits, and live?

American Standard Version
Furthermore, we had the fathers of our flesh to chasten us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?

Douay-Rheims Bible
Moreover we have had fathers of our flesh, for instructors, and we reverenced them: shall we not much more obey the Father of spirits, and live?

Darby Bible Translation
Moreover we have had the fathers of our flesh as chasteners, and we reverenced [them]; shall we not much rather be in subjection to the Father of spirits, and live?

English Revised Version
Furthermore, we had the fathers of our flesh to chasten us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?

Webster's Bible Translation
Furthermore, we have had fathers of our flesh who corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection to the Father of spirits, and live?

Weymouth New Testament
Besides this, our earthly fathers used to discipline us and we treated them with respect, and shall we not be still more submissive to the Father of our spirits, and live?

World English Bible
Furthermore, we had the fathers of our flesh to chasten us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much rather be in subjection to the Father of spirits, and live?

Young's Literal Translation
Then, indeed, fathers of our flesh we have had, chastising us, and we were reverencing them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of the spirits, and live?
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

12:1-11 The persevering obedience of faith in Christ, was the race set before the Hebrews, wherein they must either win the crown of glory, or have everlasting misery for their portion; and it is set before us. By the sin that does so easily beset us, understand that sin to which we are most prone, or to which we are most exposed, from habit, age, or circumstances. This is a most important exhortation; for while a man's darling sin, be it what it will, remains unsubdued, it will hinder him from running the Christian race, as it takes from him every motive for running, and gives power to every discouragement. When weary and faint in their minds, let them recollect that the holy Jesus suffered, to save them from eternal misery. By stedfastly looking to Jesus, their thoughts would strengthen holy affections, and keep under their carnal desires. Let us then frequently consider him. What are our little trials to his agonies, or even to our deserts? What are they to the sufferings of many others? There is a proneness in believers to grow weary, and to faint under trials and afflictions; this is from the imperfection of grace and the remains of corruption. Christians should not faint under their trials. Though their enemies and persecutors may be instruments to inflict sufferings, yet they are Divine chastisements; their heavenly Father has his hand in all, and his wise end to answer by all. They must not make light of afflictions, and be without feeling under them, for they are the hand and rod of God, and are his rebukes for sin. They must not despond and sink under trials, nor fret and repine, but bear up with faith and patience. God may let others alone in their sins, but he will correct sin in his own children. In this he acts as becomes a father. Our earthly parents sometimes may chasten us, to gratify their passion, rather than to reform our manners. But the Father of our souls never willingly grieves nor afflicts his children. It is always for our profit. Our whole life here is a state of childhood, and imperfect as to spiritual things; therefore we must submit to the discipline of such a state. When we come to a perfect state, we shall be fully reconciled to all God's chastisement of us now. God's correction is not condemnation; the chastening may be borne with patience, and greatly promote holiness. Let us then learn to consider the afflictions brought on us by the malice of men, as corrections sent by our wise and gracious Father, for our spiritual good.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 9. - Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us (more correctly, we once had, or, we used to have, the fathers of our flesh as chasteners), and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live? This introduces an à fortiori argument. We are reminded of the days of our youth, while we were under parental discipline, and bore with it submissively: much more should we submit to the discipline of our heavenly Father, to whom we are as children under training all our life long! Commentators differ as to what is exactly meant by the contrast between "the fathers of our flesh" and "the Father of spirits (τῶν πνευμάτων)." Some (among moderns Delitzsch) find here a support to the theory of creationism as against traducianism; i.e. that the soul of each individual, as distinct from the body, is a new creation, not transmitted from the parents. This view would have more to go on than it has, were we justified in implying ἡμῶν after πνευμάτων ("our spirits," in opposition to "our flesh," preceding). But τῶν πνευμάτων seems evidently meant to be understood generally; and the expression (suggested probably by Numbers 16:22 and Numbers 27:16, "The God of the spirits of all flesh") need imply only that, though God is the original Author of flesh as well as spirit, yet the latter, whether in man or otherwise existing, has in a peculiar sense its parentage from him (cf. Genesis 2:7, "The LORD GOD formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul;" also Job 33:4, "The Spirit of the LORD hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life"). Our earthly parents transmit to us our carnal existence; our spiritual part, in whatever mysterious way derived or inspired, is duo to our Divine parentage; and it is in respect of this that we are God's children and accountable to him. But, as has been intimated above, it is not human spirits only that are here in the writer's view. God is the Father of all "the spirits," whether in the flesh or not; all are of Divine parentage, for God himself is Spirit - Πνεῦμα ὁ Θεός (John 4:24). Chrysostom explains thus: Τῷ πατρὶ τῶν πνευμὰτων ἤτοι τῶν χαρισμάτων λέγει, ἤτοι τῶν εὐχῶν ψυχῶν ἤτοι τῶν ἀσωμάτων δυνάμεων

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Furthermore, we have had fathers of our flesh,.... Earthly parents; who are so called, because they are the immediate causes and instruments of the generation of their children, and of their fleshly bodies and worldly beings; and to distinguish them from the Father of spirits: and this shows, that they have not the spirit or soul from them, only the flesh or body, and which is frail and corrupt; and therefore goes by this name.

Which corrected us; early, and at proper seasons, in love, and for instruction, and to prevent ruin, and death:

and we gave them reverence; by submitting to their correction, and hearkening to it; by taking shame to themselves, and acknowledging the offence committed; by retaining the same affection for them; and, by a carefulness not to offend for the future.

Shall we not much rather be in subjection to the Father of spirits, and live? that is, to God, who is so called; not because he is the Creator of angels, who are spirits; but because he is the Creator of the souls of men; the soul is the more noble and excellent part of man: it bears a resemblance to God; it is, the life of man, and is immortal; it is exceeding precious, and the redemption of it; this was at first immediately created by God; and he still continues to create souls, which he preserves in their being, and has the power of saving and destroying them. Besides, God may be so called, because he is the author and donor of all spiritual gifts, and particularly of regenerating grace; it is he who renews a right spirit in them, and puts a new spirit into them: now such ought to be in "subjection" to him; not only as creatures to a Creator, and as subjects to their prince: but as children to a father, and particularly to him, as and when correcting; they should bow to his sovereignty, resign to his will, be humble under his mighty hand, be still and quiet, and bear all patiently; the advantage arising from such a subjection is life: "and live"; or "that ye may live"; or "and ye shall live": more comfortably, and more to the glory of God, in communion and fellowship with him here, and in heaven to all eternity.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

9. fathers … which corrected us—rather as Greek, "We had the fathers of our flesh as correctors."

subjection—See the punishment of insubordination, De 21:18.

Father of spirits—contrasted with "the fathers of our flesh." "Generation by men is carnal, by God is spiritual" [Bengel]. As "Father of spirits," He is both the Originator, and the Providential and Gracious Sustainer, at once of animal and spiritual life. Compare "and LIVE," namely, spiritually; also Heb 12:10, "that we might be partakers of His holiness" (2Pe 1:4). God is a spirit Himself, and the Creator of spirits like Himself, in contrast to men who are flesh, and the progenitors of flesh (Joh 3:6). Jesus our pattern "learned obedience" experimentally by suffering (Heb 5:8).

and live—and so, thereby live spiritually and eternally.

Hebrews 12:9 Additional Commentaries
Context
God Disciplines His Sons
8But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. 9Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live? 10For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our good, so that we may share His holiness.…
Cross References
Numbers 16:22
But Moses and Aaron fell facedown and cried out, "O God, the God who gives breath to all living things, will you be angry with the entire assembly when only one man sins?"

Numbers 27:16
"May the LORD, the God who gives breath to all living things, appoint someone over this community

Isaiah 38:16
Lord, by such things people live; and my spirit finds life in them too. You restored me to health and let me live.

Zechariah 12:1
A prophecy: The word of the LORD concerning Israel. The LORD, who stretches out the heavens, who lays the foundation of the earth, and who forms the human spirit within a person, declares:

Luke 18:2
He said: "In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought.

Luke 18:4
"For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, 'Even though I don't fear God or care what people think,

Revelation 22:6
The angel said to me, "These words are trustworthy and true. The Lord, the God who inspires the prophets, sent his angel to show his servants the things that must soon take place."
Treasury of Scripture

Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection to the Father of spirits, and live?

fathers.

John 3:6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born …

Acts 2:30 Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an …

Romans 1:3 Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed …

Romans 9:3,5 For I could wish that myself were accursed from Christ for my brothers, …

corrected. See on ver.

Hebrews 12:7 If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what …

we gave.

Exodus 20:12 Honor your father and your mother: that your days may be long on …

Leviticus 19:3 You shall fear every man his mother, and his father, and keep my …

Deuteronomy 21:18-21 If a man have a stubborn and rebellious son, which will not obey …

Deuteronomy 27:16 Cursed be he that sets light by his father or his mother. And all …

Proverbs 30:17 The eye that mocks at his father, and despises to obey his mother, …

Ezekiel 22:7 In you have they set light by father and mother: in the middle of …

Ephesians 6:1-4 Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right…

shall we not.

Malachi 1:6 A son honors his father, and a servant his master: if then I be a …

James 4:7,10 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will …

1 Peter 5:6 Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he …

the Father.

Numbers 16:22 And they fell on their faces, and said, O God, the God of the spirits …

Numbers 27:16 Let the LORD, the God of the spirits of all flesh, set a man over …

Job 12:10 In whose hand is the soul of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind.

Ecclesiastes 12:7 Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit …

Isaiah 42:5 Thus said God the LORD, he that created the heavens, and stretched …

Isaiah 57:16 For I will not contend for ever, neither will I be always wroth: …

Zechariah 12:1 The burden of the word of the LORD for Israel, said the LORD, which …

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