Friday, July 13, 2007

Witness in the Spirit: Self Control

For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline. So do not be ashamed to testify about our Lord, or ashamed of me his prisoner. But join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God… (2 Timothy 1:7, 8 NIV)

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. (Galatians 5:22, 23 NIV)

Like a city whose walls are broken down is a man who lacks self-control. (Proverbs 25:28 NIV)

We have all seen or participated in witnessing situations where the Christian has not exhibited self-control. He has gotten loud or angry or annoyed, and this annoyance has shown. To have power without love is awful. To have power without self-control is tragic…disastrous. It is power that keeps us from being timid or ashamed of Jesus Christ. Self-control keeps us from acting in ways in which we should be ashamed.

Self-control is a fruit of the Spirit. Self-control is aided by (1) confidence in the Lord and His Word, and (2) preparation in knowledge of the Word. Most situations where self-control is lacking occur when the Christian is caught not knowing the answers. Consequently, he raises his voice to get false authority.

God has given us a spirit of power, love and self-control—self-control to keep us from acting in shameful ways as we share the Good News.

No comments: