Summary: The Holy Word of God contains many admonitions concerning the importance of the Christian being self-controlled. Proverbs 16:32 says, “He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city.”
The Christian’s Power To Be Self-Controlled
The Holy Word of God contains many admonitions concerning the importance of the Christian being self-controlled. Proverbs 16:32 says, “He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city.” Also, Proverbs 25:28 says, “Like a city whose walls are broken down is a man who lacks self-control.” Therefore, a Christian without self-control is always vulnerable to attack from the world’s influences, the devil and as well as his or her own self-destructive desires. Needless to say, that person is defenseless and bound to be defeated.
Christians are warned in 2 Timothy 3:3 that in the last days there will be increasing godlessness. Paul writes, “People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, …without self control…” Certainly, no one would deny this trend today in society. Yet, the Apostle Paul exhorted the Christian, “Let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be alert and self-controlled. Let us be self-controlled, putting on faith and love as a breastplate and the hope of salvation as a helmet.” (1 Thes. 5:6). Likewise, the Apostle Peter wrote, “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Christ who called us by his own glory and goodness. For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness, and to goodness, knowledge and to knowledge, self-control.” (2 Pet. 1:3-6). Paul told young pastor Timothy, “Discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness as it is profitable for all things, not only in this life but also in the life to come.”
Brothers and sisters in Christ, the Bible teaches us to be self-controlled not to do self-control. It must be an outgrowth of the Spirit’s working in us both to will and to do of His good pleasure (Phil. 2:13). In the biblical sense, self-control consists of the right use of the will under the controlling power and performance of he Holy Spirit who indwells the believer. The Greek word egkrateia means “self-control or continence.” The Greek word egkrateia is derived from another Greek word, kratos. Kratos means “strength.” Kratos is translated power in Eph. 1:19. “…According to the working of his mighty power, which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead…” (Eph. 1:19-20). Therefore, the power TO BE self-controlled is available for the Christian but AN AVAILABLE RESOURCE (RESURRECTION POWER) DOES NOT GUARANTEE AN APPLIED RESOURCE. One must appropriate this power to be self-controlled by faith.
Several steps are necessary before the POWER TO BE SELF-CONTROL is sustained in the Christian’s everyday life. To illustrate these steps, this message of truth examines the God-given example of Daniel as recorded in Daniel 1:1-15. Dare to be a Daniel should be the Christian’s cry in this “out of control” world in which wrong is right and right is considered wrong. Daniel was a man of God who possessed faith in God’s promises to enable him to live a self-controlled life. This becomes evident as you read this brief excerpt recorded in Daniel 1:1-15: