10/16/2016: Self- Control (Discipline)

Self- Control (Discipline)

 Last week we talked about lack of self-control, and that it could lead to strongholds in your life.  Today we are going to talk about how we can gain self-control or self-discipline.


Question: What are some of the ways we can gain self-control?  As the Hebrews were promised the land, but had to take it by force, one town at a time.  Therefore, we are promised the gift of self-control, yet we also must take it by force.


The concept of “self-control” implies a battle between a divided self.  It implies that our “self” produces desires we should not satisfy, but instead “control.”  In Luke 9:23 Jesus says, “We should deny ourselves, and take up our cross daily and follow him.”  (Jesus)


So daily our “self” produces desires that should be “denied” or “controlled.”  In Luke 13:24 Jesus says “the door to heaven is narrow, strive to enter through the narrow door.”  The Greek word for strive is (agonizesthe).  English agonize- meaning: Several, but a few is torture one’s self, to put forth great effort of any kind, wrestle with one’s self, exercise one self’s.  (What does that tell us?)

It’s not going to be easy!  Matthew 5:29 says, “If your eye even if it’s good caused you to stumble, take it out and throw it from you.”  This is the fierceness of self-control.  Matthew 11:12 Jesus says, “The kingdom of heaven has been forcefully advancing, and violent people attack it.”


Since John, the Baptist been preaching and baptizing.  No with this scripture, I think it means as we grow in God, to enter the kingdom it takes courage, unwavering faith, determination, and endurance, because of the things that come against us for following Jesus.


Paul says in 1st
Corinthians 9: 25-27 “25: All athletes practice strict self-control.  They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize.  26: So I run straight to the goal with purpose in every step.  I am not like a boxer who misses his punches.  27: I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should.  Otherwise I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified.”

So running a race requires discipline.  Paul is saying Christian life take hard work, self-denial, and preparation.  As Christians, we are running towards our heavenly reward.  We are warriors in Christ.  We must be disciplined internally and externally because without discipline we cannot stay alive long enough to even be a warrior.  We must also develop the attitude of persistence.  No matter the pain or struggle, it must be settled in the mind.  Self-control is saying, No to sinful desires even when it hurts.