sermon: True Self-Control
A Life Committed to Pleasing God
Richard T. Ritenbaugh
Given 10-Jan-15; Sermon #1248; 78 minutes
Richard Ritenbaugh, reflecting upon the Walter Mischel Test of self-control, a test in which only 30% of youngsters delayed gratifying their appetites, describes the techniques in which these students delayed gratification. Dr. Mischel, who was able to predict social success of these students on the basis of these earlier tests, determined to probe the mechanism of this self-control, discovering how to convert "hot stimuli" to "cold" (distracting) stimuli. Self-control constitutes the ability to direct or focus our attention so that our decisions will not be directed by wrong thoughts. If we change our thoughts, we can change our behavior. In essence, learning self- control (the last, perhaps most difficult to attain or most important designated fruit of God's Holy Spirit) is equivalent to repentance. Self-control refers to inner power to control impulses, emotions, or desires, exhibiting self-government. Self-control follows knowledge in the list of virtues, indicating we need to act on godly knowledge, practicing it in perpetuity. Holiness makes self-control possible; a holy person is self-controlled. God's Holy Spirit increases self-control exponentially, giving us the power to replace "hot" stimuli with "cold" stimuli. Ice cold stimuli (enforcing extreme restraint) must displace hot stimuli (giving into impulses). Like the apostle Paul, we must practice self-control for others. Like Joseph, we need to practice self-control on a daily basis. When we repent and continue to repent, we exercise self-control. In Luke 4, Jesus Christ exercises incredible self-control, refuting Satan's temptation with Scripture—the mind of God.
Able to energize desires wisely Acts 24:24-25 According to our works Ascetisism Akrates Autocrat Avoid excess drink Avoid excess eating Binging Bite our tongues Chastity Cold stimuli Continence Enkrataja as a response I Corinthians 9:24 Fleeing from fornication Free and independent man Fruits of God's Holy Galatians 5:19-23 Genesis 39:12 Gnostics Hedonistic pulls Hot stimuli Human counterparts Hupomene Ice-cold behaviors Ice-cold stimuli Incontinence James 3 Judgment Knowledge List of virtues Luke 4: 1-3 Marshmallow Test Metanoja Power inside Power over Prefix Promiscuity Qualities of overseer II Peter 1:6 II Timothy 3: Self-control Self - restraint Sensuality Sexual restraint Single mindedness Taking a nap Temperance Titus 1: 7-8 To exhibit self government Turning chair around Uncontrolled Walter Mischel, The Marshallow Test, and Self-Control Serving others Sexual sins Works of the flesh
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