I first want to apologize for not posting anything for a few weeks. I have been in the midst of a personal struggle that has affected my family and I dramatically. I will not get into the details in this forum but I would ask for your prayers. I would ask that we would seek God and His strength as we all get through this season of hurt and healing. As a friend once told me, no matter what the question is, Jesus is the answer, and I believe that.
With that being said, I would like to begin posting again with the fruit of the Spirit. In particular the attribute of self control. Our associate pastor Erik Raymond did a sermon on this very attribute recently and I would like to share some of my notes from it. I have since gone back with re-newed interest as of late and it is really great stuff.
What is the need for self control?
Ephesians 2:1-3 says this:
1 And you were dead in the trespasses and sins 2 in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— 3 among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.
Ephesians tells us that we were once dead in our sins and that we once lived in the passions of our flesh. I love the verse 4 that follows these mentioned above. God, who is rich in mercy, and loved us even when we were dead in our sins, made us alive with Christ. We need to rely on the Spirit in our self control because we were woefully condemned and enslaved to sin. Were being the keyword here.
How do we strengthen our self control?
Lately I have been hearing this expression, “preach the gospel to yourself” and this is especially true in the case of self control. Galatians 4:4-7 is a great place to read for preaching the gospel to yourself.
4 But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, 5 to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. 6 And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, Abba! Father! 7 So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.
You see that God has made a provision for us who were once enslaved to sin. He has adopted us as sons and joint heirs with His own son Jesus Christ. If we live in utter dependence on our Abba Father for His grace, then we have the hope of overcoming those the sins of losing our self control. Ephesians 2 and Galatians 4 have become very special passages for me lately. I pray that you will also read and meditate on them.
If you’d like to hear the wonderful message presented by Erik Raymond click here.
October 26, 2007 at 8:21 am
Galatians 5:16-17 say: But I say, ‘walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other to keep you from doing the things you want to do.’
For that reason alone, the opposition of flesh and Spirit, we need to practice self-control. Anything that keeps us from the things we want to do – which as His chosen should be the good works He has for us – should be absolute taboo in our lives.
I’m glad you’re blogging again. I’ve missed reading you.