Navigating Our Cultural Crisis of Self-Control

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In an era characterized by rampant relativism, self-control is slipping away. But no matter what culture says, the Bible calls us to personal restraint, with moral parameters guiding our paths.

Proverbs 5 speaks specifically about the issue of adultery, warning against its impact on the human heart and soul, but the broader issue of self-discipline is also worth noting.

From a 30,000-foot view, Verses 21-23 (NIV) make it clear that lack of discipline will result in dire problems:

"For your ways are in full view of the Lord, and he examines all your paths. The evil deeds of the wicked ensnare them; the cords of their sins hold them fast. For lack of discipline they will die, led astray by their own great folly."

Earlier in the chapter, comments about adultery are timeless, with the text encouraging people to avoid cheating. And if people ignore this advice and choose the wrong path — one that shows a lack of self-control and restraint — the Bible makes it clear that they will one day regret those actions.

Verses 11-14 read:

"At the end of your life you will groan, when your flesh and body are spent. You will say, 'How I hated discipline! How my heart spurned correction! I would not obey my teachers or turn my ear to my instructors. And I was soon in serious trouble in the assembly of God’s people.'"

In the end, discipline matters. We live in a culture that tells us "anything goes" — that we define our own moral parameters. 

Some might truly believe this, but the evidence shows that God's order matters. When we reject that order and live for ourselves, diving into things like adultery or simply refusing to live by the values God has set in order, we're on spiritual quicksand.

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Be sure to also check out my quick devotions and reflections on Proverbs 1, Proverbs 2Proverbs 3 and Proverbs 4.

And...curious about what all this means? Looking to better understand who God is? Take the next step.