Reports on what God is doing through Bible believing evangelical Christians in Honduras, Nicaragua, Peru, India and Ecuador. Jesus said, "If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it shall be done for you" (John 15:7).
SELAH! Pause - reflect- just think of that!
Discipline: Train Yourself to be Godly
What will it take in the
Christian’s life to overcome broken resolutions and
It will be a great benefit to
realize that there is no such thing as instant
godliness. There are no “one minute,” thirty days,
or “three easy steps” to a life of righteousness
that pleases God. That is not the way God planned
for our sanctification.
We are justified instantly by
grace through faith in Jesus Christ.
But justification and sanctification are
We have spent a life time
developing patterns of sinful attitudes, thinking
and behaviors. These habits will not be broken and
replaced with godly behavior and thinking without
commitment and discipline.
The apostle Paul uses an
athletic image to tell us we must discipline
ourselves to live godly. “Discipline yourself for
the purpose of godliness” (1 Timothy 4:7). Why is it
so important? The next verse tells us “it holds
promise for the present life and also for the life
to come.” It has immediate pay offs in this life,
and eternal rewards.
Discipline is that determined
effort on our part that corrects, molds and perfects
the character of a person. Holy character does not
come all at once, but over a lifetime.
This “discipline” is the
training that is needed for the unhindered pursuit
of God’s will and purposes.
Discipline puts into daily
practice our commitment to live a godly life. It
begins in the mind. “Be not conformed to this world,
but be transformed by the renewing of your mind that
you may prove what the will of God is, that which is
good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2).
This inner transformation takes
place as we memorize, meditate, and put into daily
practice the precious truths of the Bible.
Old sinful habits and patterns
of behavior and thinking are changed as we form new
habits of obedience to the will of God. As we put
these new attitudes and behaviors into practice over
a period of time we form new patterns of thinking
and behavior. It then becomes easier and easier to
live a life that is pleasing to God. We are
responsible to put into action a plan for daily
Bible reading, study, prayer, etc. The Holy Spirit
can then apply to our inner person the Scriptures we
have learned. I cease to be amazed how He brings to
my mind in time of need passages of Scripture or
principles I have learned in the past. He gives us
inner strength as He applies His Word to our daily
life. We have to do our part by disciplining
ourselves to study and meditate on the Word of God.
If you will not discipline yourself to get into
God’s Word you will not grow in Christ-likeness. No
one else can do that for you.
Just as physical exercise is
good for the body, the apostle Paul tells us our
mind, emotions, will and spiritual life needs
vigorous exercise as well. Just as the Greek athlete
would discipline himself with vigorous exercise in
order to win the athletic games, we are exhorted to
exercise in such as way as to excel in godliness.
M. R. Vincent notes, “Godliness
has promise for the present life because it has
promise of the life which is to come. Only the life
which is in Christ Jesus (2 Tim. 1:1) is life indeed
(1 Tim. 6:19).”
Are you training yourself
toward the goal of true godliness? “The reason why
we toil and struggle so hard is that we have set our
hopes on the living God, who is the Savior of all
men, and especially of those who believe” (1 Timothy
4:10). That is what makes the effort on our part so
As we have stressed before, we
live a life of obedience as we yield to the presence
of the Holy Spirit. We must daily know Jesus Christ
better if we are to grow in Christ-likeness. To know
Him better we must feed our minds and nourish our
faith in Him.
Are you training your soul in
holiness? Are you in a determined pursuit of
godliness in your own life?
When we keep in mind of the
ultimate goal we realize the pursuit is worthwhile.
Our goal is the pursuit of
holiness. It is nothing less than to be presented to
God the Father whole and complete, perfect, in Jesus
Message by Wil Pounds (c) 2006
Anyone is free to use this material and distribute it, but it may not be sold under any circumstances whatsoever without the author's written consent.
Unless otherwise noted "Scripture quotations taken from the NASB.""Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE" © Copyright 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation Used by permission." (www.Lockman.org)
Scripture quoted by permission. Quotations designated (NET) are from the NET Bible copyright ©1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://www.bible.org/. All rights reserved.
Wil is a graduate of William Carey University, B. A.; New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, Th. M.; and Azusa Pacific University, M. A. He has pastored in Panama, Ecuador and the U. S, and served for over 20 years as missionary in Ecuador and Honduras. He had a daily expository Bible teaching ministry head in over 100 countries from 1972-2005. He continues to seek opportunities to be personally involved in world missions. Wil and his wife Ann have three grown daughters. He currently serves as a Baptist pastor and teaches seminary extension courses in Ecuador.
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