Moderation is better than muscle, self-control better than political power. A person without self-control is like a house with its doors and windows knocked out. -Proverbs 16:32, 25:28 MSG

When I think of self-control I don't think about mind control. In my view it is actually the opposite of mind control. Self-control is the exercise of the inner being over the outer being or flesh which is comprised of the mind, the body and the emotions. In contrast the inner being encompasses the spirit or heart of a person. One of the goals of the spiritual life is to feed, exercise and strengthen the inner being to the end that it exercises control over the outer being.

The Apostle Paul encapsulizes these thoughts in this passage:
"For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ" -2 Corinthians 10:3-5 NASB
Interesting how Paul contrasts the spiritual and fleshly dimensions by speaking of taking thoughts captive. The imagery of thoughts being fortresses to be destroyed speaks to me. The warfare presented here is very real and if we do not understand its reality then I believe that we are (in part anyways) doomed to be led around by fleshly thoughts and speculations and missing out on the true benefits of thinking led from within rather than from without.

Lord, teach us new ways to feed, exercise and strengthen our inner being to the end that we will have self-control.


  1. Bob, this is a great post! It reminds me of Galatians 5:19-25. This was a great read for me at the start of my day!


I love to get comments and usually respond. So come back to see my reply.
You can click here to see my comment policy.