An Obstacle to Indulgence
Discipline Yourself – Part 1
Scripture Reading: 1 Corinthians 9:24-27
Key Verse: 1 Corinthians 9:27 NLT
I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified.
The word indulgence does not always translate into a sinful behavior. There are many things that are indulgences that are actually blessings from God. I don’t believe we serve a God that simply meets our basic needs. I believe He goes beyond our needs and blesses us with over the top blessings in many ways. However, God’s Spirit lives in us to help us know when an indulgence is leading us into a sinful behavior.
The Apostle Paul speaks directly to this in our printed key verse for today. Though most translators use the word discipline for this verse, in the original language, Paul used a word that literally means “beat.” “Hupopiazo” is a Greek word that was used to refer to black and blue beatings. The Greek culture had the sport of boxing and this word was used often to refer to their rough handling of their bodies to prepare for a fight. The Apostle Paul wrote: “…I discipline (or beat) my body and make it my slave.” In other words, Paul understood that Christ followers’ bodies would have a tendency to constantly indulge in any and all desires, so we must fight hard against those tendencies.
I think you’ll agree that our natural default is to say yes to what we want and crave. Unfortunately, we want and crave that which would grieve God’s heart far too often. That tendency is our sinful nature fighting the Spirit of God within us. (Continued)
Father, I will discipline my body today, not allowing it to lead all the decisions of my life. I will listen and obey your Spirit in me. In Jesus’ name, amen.