18th November 2010

Clothed With Self-Control

11th in a series

“And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things.”
1 Corinthians 9:25 (NKJV)

Let’s face it, we live in a hedonistic world. A world that is pleasure seeking and materialistic, constantly looking for more of everything and never quite satisfied by anything, at least not for long.

Even those who have much are often seen to be striving for more and turning to drugs, alcohol or sex in an attempt to satisfy their appetites. Paradoxically, what they seek is not to be had by simply having more. It has more to do with a frame of mind; with a view we take of things. Sometimes it is a desire to outdo our neighbour, being better than the Jones’.

Even splendid King Solomon in all his abundance and extravagance found life a vexation of spirit. Listen to him; “I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and, behold, all is vanity and vexation of spirit.” (Ecclesiastes 1:14 KJV).  “Again, I considered all travail, and every right work, that for this a man is envied of his neighbour. This is also vanity and vexation of spirit.” (Ecclesiastes 4:4 KJV).

As we consider the experience of Solomon there is clearly one thing he was NOT; He was not temperate, he did not exhibit self-control. Rather he seemed very much out of control, his appetites seemed insatiable and he found satisfaction in nothing.

Notice what he goes on to say; “Better is an handful with quietness, than both hands full with travail and vexation of spirit.” (Ecclesiastes 4:6 KJV).

A fruit of the Spirit is self-control or temperance. This enables us to be satisfied and grateful for what we have. It removes the constant seeking for more and more, which in turn encourages the peace and calm that accompanies the Christian life, in spite of what may be happening to us. We reflect this in our composure and demeanour, and once again the gospel of Jesus Christ is preached through us.

Father in heaven, thank you for the peace that you grant through the fruit of self-control.  Please let me reflect that peace and calm in all my dealings.

Study by David Stirk 

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