Archive for September, 2009

Self-Control — A Word Study — Day 5

Self-Control n.
control or restraint of oneself or one’s actions, feelings, etc.
syn. self-discipline, self-restraint, willpower, levelheadedness

Today’s Verse: 2 Timothy 3:3

  • … heartless, and hateful. Their words will be cruel, and they will have no self-control or pity. These people will hate everything that is good. [CEV]
  • … without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, … [NIV]
  • Don’t be naive. There are difficult times ahead. As the end approaches, people are going to be self-absorbed, money-hungry, self-promoting, stuck-up, profane, contemptuous of parents, crude, coarse, dog-eat-dog, unbending, slanderers, impulsively wild, savage, cynical, treacherous, ruthless, bloated windbags, addicted to lust, and allergic to God. They’ll make a show of religion, but behind the scenes they’re animals. Stay clear of these people. [2 Timothy 3:1-5 The Message]
  • Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, … [KJV]

In Context:  Most Biblical Historians agree that 2nd Timothy is compiled of letters written to Timothy by Paul, who was in prison awaiting execution.  These letters are considered Paul’s final words to his disciple, Timothy and through Timothy to the Church.  Paul warns encourages Timothy to remain faithful and warns him against the kinds of people who will populate the “end times” — or the last days before God’s final judgement.

Biblical & Contemporary Connotations: the warnings against becoming too familiar with false believers and the wrong kinds of people is as relevant today as it was in Biblical times.  As Christians we should not shun unbelievers and false profits, but we also should not embrace them.  Instead we should show compassion and mercy, extend God’s grace and faith, and live our lives as examples of a better way.

Journal: Easier said than done!  How much simpler it is to confine ourselves to our own church, family and neighborhood.  There is no effort, no challenge and no defensiveness required — and there is also no witness.  How can we pray “make me the heart and hands of Jesus” when we refuse to take our compassion outside of our own safe environment?

Heavenly Father, remind me to get up out of my comfort zone.  Call me to service where my life, witness and testimony will magnify and glorify you.  In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

Bible Study Method

I am not certain where this originated. I found it in several places on the web and none of the ones I checked annotated it’s origin.
This is a procedure to follow which will facilitate meditation of a verse. The acrostic, SPACE PETS, will help you remember the steps.

Ask yourself, Do I have a:

Sin to confess? Do I need to make any restitution?
Promise to claim? Is it a universal promise? Have I met the condition(s)?
Attitude to change? Am I willing to work on a negative attitude and begin building toward a positive one?
Command to obey? Am I willing to do it no matter how I feel?
Example to follow? Is it a positive example for me to copy or a negative one to avoid?

Prayer to pray? Is there anything I need to pray back to God?
Error to avoid? Is there any problem that I should be alert to, or beware of?
Truth to believe? What new things can I learn about God the Father, Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, or the other biblical teachings?
Something to praise God for? Is there something here I can be thankful for?

Be sure to journal your answers.