THE ART OF SELF CONTROL
by Tony Alamo
You have to desperately want to be controlled by the Holy Spirit before He will continuously control you. If you desperately want to be led by the Holy Spirit, He will do it, but only if you are, by choice, under the control of the Holy Spirit.1 The Lord will absolutely not force you to be obedient to Him, to serve Him.
We must fight our own defiant will or nature, because our flesh, our will, is the devil himself.2 Self and selfness is Satan. This is a matter of self-discipline. Only if we discipline ourselves will the Holy Spirit, which is the Comforter, help us be disciplined.3 When we decide to do this, the devil will come in with confusion, persecution, temptations, depression, and other distractions, doing anything he can to get your mind off your disciplining yourself. This is because the devil knows your disciplining yourself is your victory. Be extra alert, extra determined, when this happens to you. First Peter 5:8-9 warns us to “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished [have been mastered] in your brethren that are in the world.”
Ephesians 4:27 commands us, “Neither give place to the devil.” James 4:7 states, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” If you are able to get hold of yourself, to rule yourself, you will have won the biggest battle you will ever fight. James 4:8 tells us to draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to us. First Peter 4:1-2 states, “Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin; That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.”
Time flies by very fast. All too soon it is time to leave this world.4 We need to discipline ourselves early in life.5 “Remember now thy Creator [now, when you’re young] in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them; While the sun, or the light, or the moon, or the stars, be not darkened, nor the clouds return after the rain: In the day when the keepers of the house shall tremble, and the strong men shall bow themselves, and the grinders cease because they are few, and those that look out of the windows be darkened, And the doors shall be shut in the streets, when the sound of the grinding is low, and he shall rise up at the voice of the bird, and all the daughters of music shall be brought low; Also when they shall be afraid of that which is high, and fears shall be in the way, and the almond tree shall flourish, and the grasshopper shall be a burden, and desire shall fail: because man goeth to his long home [Heaven or Hell], and the mourners go about the streets: Or ever the silver cord be loosed, or the golden bowl be broken, or the pitcher be broken at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the cistern.
“Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it. Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher; all is vanity. And moreover, because the Preacher was wise, he still taught the people knowledge; yea, he gave good heed, and sought out, and set in order many proverbs. The preacher sought to find out acceptable words: and that which was written was upright, even words of truth. The words of the wise are as goads, and as nails fastened by the masters of assemblies, which are given from one shepherd. And further, by these, my son, be admonished: of making many books there is no end; and much study is a weariness of the flesh.
“Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter [of life before we die]: Fear God, and keep His commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil” (Eccl. Ch. 12). The first good thing you could ever do is to accept Him. Do this by saying this prayer to Him now:
My Lord and my God, have mercy upon my soul, a sinner. 1 I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of the Living God. 2 I believe that He died on the cross and shed His precious blood for the forgiveness of all my sins. 3 I believe that God raised Jesus from the dead by the power of the Holy Spirit 4 and that He sits on the right hand of God at this moment, hearing my confession of sin and this prayer. 5 I open up the door of my heart and I invite You into my heart, Lord Jesus. 6 Wash all of my filthy sins away in the precious blood that You shed in my place on the cross at Calvary. 7 You will not turn me away, Lord Jesus, You will forgive my sins and save my soul. I know because Your Word, the Bible says so. 8 Your Word says that You will turn no one away, and that includes me. 9 Therefore, I know that You have heard me, and I know that You have answered me, and I know that I am saved. 10 And I thank You, Lord Jesus, for saving my soul, and I will show my thankfulness by doing as You command and sin no more. 11
You've just completed the first step in a series of five steps which are necessary to receive salvation. Your second step is to deny yourself and take up the cross daily for the purpose of mortifying yourself, that is, for putting to death your own will, your soulful self, and the world with all of its lusts. All these must be baptized into the death of Christ.
Step three is your resurrection from the satanic life of Adam unto the sinless life of Christ. Step four is your ascension into a position of authority to reign for God on earth, and the fifth step is to reign for God on earth to the end for the purpose of bringing about the kingdom of Heaven on earth. You must learn the Word of God, then submit yourself and do what the Word says, so that the Church and the world may see evidence of your submission to God's Word, His order, and His authority in and by you.
Praise the Lord. May God reward you abundantly.
Pastor Tony Alamo
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The Art of Self Control footnotes:
1. Deut. 30:19-20, Josh. 24:14-15, I Chron. 28:9, Jer. 29:12-14, Matt. 7:7-8, 10:38, 16:24-25, I Pet. 5:2-3, Rev. 22:17 return
2. Rom. 7:5, 13-25, 8:1, 3-9, 12-13, 13:14, Gal. 5:16-17, 19-21, I Pet. 4:1-2 return
3. John 14:15-18, 26 return
4. James 4:14 return
5. Eccl. 11:9-10 return
1. Psa. 51:5, Rom. 3:10-12, 23 return
2. Matt. 26:63-64, 27:54, Luke 1:30-33, John 9:35-37, Rom. 1:3-4 return
3. Acts 4:12, 20:28, Rom. 3:25, I John 1:7, Rev. 5:9 return
4. Psa. 16:9-10, Matt. 28:5-7, Mark 16:9, 12, 14, John 2:19, 21, 10:17-18, 11:25, Acts 2:24, 3:15, Rom. 8:11, I Cor. 15:3-7 return
5. Luke 22:69, Acts 2:25-36, Heb. 10:12-13 return
6. I Cor. 3:16, Rev. 3:20 return
7. Eph. 2:13-22, Heb. 9:22, 13:12, 20-21, I John 1:7, Rev. 1:5, 7:14 return
8. Matt. 26:28, Acts 2:21, 4:12, Eph. 1:7, Col. 1:14 return
9. Matt. 21:22, John 6:35, 37-40, Rom. 10:13 return
10. Heb. 11:6 return
11. John 5:14, 8:11, Rom. 6:4, I Cor. 15:10, Rev. 7:14, 22:14 return