Today’s message summary from Pastor Gus Brown:
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such things there is no law.
Self-control is the measure of keeping one to remain focused on following Jesus Christ. It is an area that is controlled by the Holy Spirit. A lack of self control comes from being controlled by the flesh. Fleshly control is an opening to demonic influence. The Holy Spirit is present to allow for self control but a person must yield to the Spirit in order to maintain self control.
In Galatians 5, it is noted that the law is present because of sin, but it is the fruits of The Spirit that are beyond the law because you are acting in self control under God’s presence.
Self-control helps to capture all of our emotions. It is the virtue of one who masters his desires and passions, especially his sensual appetites.
Paul witnesses to Felix:
24 After some days, when Felix came with his wife Drusilla, who was Jewish, he sent for Paul and listened to him on the subject of faith in Christ Jesus. 25 Now as he spoke about righteousness, self-control, and the judgment to come, Felix became afraid and replied, “Leave for now, but when I find time I’ll call for you.”
Felix is being addressed because he is in desperate need of exhibiting self-control. He has been through three marriages. He needed to hear from Paul about:
1. Faith in Christ
4. Judgment to come
Paul is in control.
19 But when they hand you over, don’t worry about how or what you should speak. For you will be given what to say at that hour, 20 because you are not speaking, but the Spirit of your Father is speaking through you.
You may feel you have a right to take action against a person for their mistreatment of you.
1 Samuel 24:4-6
4 so they said to him, “Look, this is the day the Lord told you about: ‘I will hand your enemy over to you so you can do to him whatever you desire.’” Then David got up and secretly cut off the corner of Saul’s robe.
5 Afterward, David’s conscience bothered him because he had cut off the corner of Saul’s robe. 6 He said to his men, “I swear before the Lord: I would never do such a thing to my lord, the Lord’s anointed. I will never lift my hand against him, since he is the Lord’s anointed.”
1 Samuel 26:7-10
7 That night, David and Abishai came to the troops, and Saul was lying there asleep in the inner circle of the camp with his spear stuck in the ground by his head. Abner and the troops were lying around him. 8 Then Abishai said to David, “Today God has handed your enemy over to you. Let me thrust the spear through him into the ground just once. I won’t have to strike him twice!”
9 But David said to Abishai, “Don’t destroy him, for who can lift a hand against the Lord’s anointed and be blameless?” 10 David added, “As the Lord lives, the Lord will certainly strike him down: either his day will come and he will die, or he will go into battle and perish.
Self-control is a quality for anyone in leadership.
…but hospitable, loving what is good, sensible, righteous, holy, self-controlled.
Older men are to be level headed, worthy of respect, sensible, and sound in faith, love, and endurance.
1 Timothy 3:2
An overseer, therefore, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, self-controlled, sensible, respectable, hospitable, an able teacher.
1 Corinthians 9:25
Now everyone who competes exercises self-control in everything. However, they do it to receive a crown that will fade away, but we a crown that will never fade away.
Having knowledge of God’s Word helps to build us up in self-control. Training under God’s Word requires it, and it will teach you how to rely more and more on the presence of God in your life to rely upon Him in maintaining self-control.
The value of self-control is perseverance (patience).
2 Peter 1:6
…knowledge with self-control, self-control with endurance, endurance with godliness.
Self-control can bring you respect (honor). It teaches how to avoid strife.
It is honorable for a man to resolve a dispute,
but any fool can get himself into a quarrel.
Self-control (calmness) brings rest. It provides the ability to work things out.
If the ruler’s anger rises against you, don’t leave your place,
for calmness puts great offenses to rest.
Without self-control, you can only display the flesh at its worst and all of its foolishness.
A patient person shows great understanding,
but a quick-tempered one promotes foolishness.
2 Timothy 3:3
…unloving, irreconcilable, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, without love for what is good.
You are being evaluated by others in your words, actions and behaviors to see if you really are who you claim to be–a Christian. The Christian is expected to have self-control. Living a life of carnality will show only a lack of control.
God wants you to be able to have the joy of the presence of the Holy Spirit by operating in self-control. When the characteristics of the fruits of The Spirit are manifested before others, the very presence of God and His power can be experienced by others as you remain faithful to Him.