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In today’s podcast episode I will continue the book review series of Spiritual Disciplines For The Christian Life by Donald Whitney. As a result of overwhelming response to my 2014 reader survey, I want to focus on the challenges of personal spiritual growth. Literally, 100% of those that participated in my readers survey selected personal spiritual growth as a challenge in their life. With that, I’m diving into a very influential book that offers practical application.
Spiritual Disciplines For The Christian Life by Donald Whitney has been powerfully impactful on my personal spiritual growth. I’m convinced it will help you as well. I encourage you to get a copy, read it, and begin to discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness (1 Timothy 4:7).
- “The clock and the dollar are such substantial factors in so many parts of life that their role must be considered in any serious discussion of Godly living.”
- The Disciplined Use of Time
- 1) Use Time Wisely “Because the Days Are Evil”
- Ephesians 5:15-16 – Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men, but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil. (michaeltanner.org/016)
- “We must carefully discipline ourselves in how we walk in this world, else we will conform more to its ways rather than to the ways of Christ.”
- “If we do not discipline our use of time for the purpose of Godliness in these evil days, these evil days will keep us from becoming Godly.”
- 2) Wise Use of Time Is the Preparation for Eternity
- “There is a specific day on the calendar when all my preparation for eternity will be over. And since that day could be any day, I should use my time wisely, for it is all the time I have to prepare for where I will endlessly be beyond the grave.”
- 2 Corinthians 6:2 – Now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation.
- 3) Time is Short
- “The more scarce something is, the more valuable it is.”
- “The way we use our time has eternal significance.”
- James 4:14 – You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.
- “Even the longest life is brief in comparison to eternity.”
- “Regardless how much time you have left to develop more Christlikeness, it isn’t much. Use it well.”
- 4) Time is Passing
- “Not only is time short, but what does remain is fleeting.”
- 1 John 2:17 – The world and its desires pass away.
- 5) The Remaining Time Is Uncertain
- Proverbs 27:1 – Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring forth.
- “Obviously, we must make certain kinds of plans as though we were going to live for many more years. But there is a very real sense in which we must use our time for the purpose of godliness as though it were uncertain that would live tomorrow, for that is a very certain uncertainty.”
- 6) Time Lost Cannot Be Regained
- “Once it is gone, it is gone forever and can never be regained.”
- John 9:4 – As long as it is day, we must do the work of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work.
- Philippians 3:13-14 – Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus
- 7) You Are Accountable to God for Your Time
- Romans 14:12 – So then, each one of us will give an account of himself to God.
- “So not only will we be held accountable for our time, but our eternal reward will be directly related to our earthly use of time.”
- Hebrews 5:12 – In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food!
- “Deciding to discipline yourself to use your time for the purpose of Godliness is not a matter of delay or deliberation. Each hour that passes is another you must give account for.”
- 8) Time Is So Easily Lost
- Proverbs 26:13-14 – There is a lion in the road, a fierce lion roaming the streets! As a door turns on hinges, so a sluggard turns on his bed.
- Proverbs 24:33-34 – A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest – and poverty will come on you like a bandit and scarcity like an armed man.
- “You don’t have to do anything to lose time.”
- “If people threw away their money as thoughtlessly as they throw away their time, we would think them insane.”
- 9) We Value Time at Death
- “As the one who is out of money values it most when it is gone, so do we at death value time most when it is gone.”
- “If you suddenly realized you had no more time, would you regret how you have spent your time in the past and how you spend it now?”
- “Won’t you be glad then for those parts of your life that you spent in the Scriptures, prayer, worship, evangelism, serving, fasting, etc., for the purpose of becoming more like the One before whom you are about to stand in judgment.”
- 10) Time’s Value in Eternity
- Luke 16:25 – Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony.
- “What value would those like this man, who have lost all opportunity for eternal life, place on the time we now have?”
- 1) Use Time Wisely “Because the Days Are Evil”
Links to resources mentioned in today’s podcasts: