Temperance is a powerful virtue which is part of the character of every born again child of God. As a Christian we must be temperate in all things. I hope that you will study and believe what the Bible teaches and what the Holy Spirit witnesses to you. You must be temperate in all things.
But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
What will happen when you receive the Holy Spirit? Your carnal nature will be purged and you will increase in the measure of grace you possess and display described as the fruit of the Spirit.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
Temperance is defined as: strong in a thing (masterful), self-controlled (especially in appetite, etc. those things which satisfy the desires of the flesh).
1 Corinthians 9:24-27
24 Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.
25 And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.
26 I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air:
27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.
Consider the words which describe this powerful virtue called temperance.
NT:75 GREEK; agonizomai (ag-o-nid'-zom-ahee); from NT:73; to struggle, literally (to compete for a prize), figuratively (to contend with an adversary), or genitive case (to endeavor to accomplish something. KJV - fight, labor fervently, strive.
Temperance does not come easy. It is a struggle. Without the grace of sanctification, this struggle will be severe. With the help of the indwelling Holy Spirit, this struggle will be much easier.
To be temperate is to put forth the necessary effort to win the prize of eternal life. The prize is worth the struggle. You must remember that you are contending with your adversary the Devil. This word temperance is elsewhere in the KJV translated into the English words fight, labor fervently and strive.
2 Peter 1:1-9
1 Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ:
2 Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord,
3 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:
4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
5 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;
6 And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;
7 And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.
8 For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
9 But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.
The standard of the Christian life is often described in the New Testament with words which tell us what we must and must not do. These things are not optional. This is the way Christians live. If your life is different than what the Bible describes, you need to examine your own heart and be sure you have not deceived yourself into thinking you are justified and sanctified when you are not the thing you think you are.
1 Corinthians 6:9-13
9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,
10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.
11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.
12 All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.
13 Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body.
Paul describes the way of holiness and the way of the wicked. God does not want any of His children to be under the addictive power of any fleshly desire or perverted affections or habits.
7 For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God; not selfwilled, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre;
8 But a lover of hospitality, a lover of good men, sober, just, holy, temperate;
9 Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.
God does not have one standard for the preacher and a lesser standard for the rest of the congregation. God is no respecter of persons. What He does for the preacher, He will also do for you.
1 But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine:
2 That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience.
3 The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;
4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,
5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.
This is the Christian lifestyle. Do you have temperance? Are you striving for the mastery so that you can win the prize of eternal life?