How To Be Strong

1 Timothy 4:8: For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come.

Doing something for someone else is good exercise. It strengthens your unselfish muscles. Doing selfish things strengthens your selfish muscles. It makes you grotesque. When you do something for someone else your physical muscles and your unselfish muscles work together. Both benefit. When you do selfish things your physical muscles and your unselfish muscles oppose each other. And your physical muscles prevail over your unselfish muscles.

Look around you. The unselfish people are strong in the right things and the selfish people are strong in the wrong things. You enjoy those around you that do things for you or others. You enjoy those that do things for the Lord. You don*t enjoy those that benefit themselves at your expense or the expense of others. You don*t enjoy those that oppose God. They oppose Him because they don*t know Him.

Our unselfish muscles need to be at least as strong as our selfish muscles, preferably stronger.

Matthew 22:39b: . . . Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

Here*s another way to be strong. Know the Lord.

Daniel 11:32: And such as do wickedly against the covenant shall he corrupt by flatteries: but the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits.

Knowing the Lord provides nourishment for our unselfish muscles and doing things for others provides exercise for them. We need both. God*s muscles are ALL unselfish. He has no selfish muscles. His goal is for us to be like Him. And it should be our goal as well. When a man is said to be godly, it means that he is like God.

1 Timothy 4:8b: . . . godliness is profitable unto all things, . . .

Charles Haddon Spurgeon on Daniel 11:32:

Every believer understands that to know God is the highest and best form of knowledge; and this spiritual knowledge is a source of strength to the Christian. It strengthens his faith. Believers are constantly spoken of in the Scriptures as being persons who are enlightened and taught of the Lord; they are said to *have an unction from the Holy One,* and it is the Spirit*s peculiar office to lead them into all truth, and all this for the increase and the fostering of their faith. Knowledge strengthens love, as well as faith. Knowledge opens the door, and then through that door we see our Saviour. Or, to use another similitude, knowledge paints the portrait of Jesus, and when we see that portrait then we love Him, we cannot love a Christ whom we do not know, at least, in some degree. If we know but little of the excellences of Jesus, what He has done for us, and what He is doing now, we cannot love Him much; but the more we know Him, the more we shall love Him. Knowledge also strengthens hope. How can we hope for a thing if we do not know of its existence? Hope may be the telescope, but till we receive instruction, our ignorance stands in the front of the glass, and we can see nothing whatever; knowledge removes the interposing object, and when we look through the bright optic glass we discern the glory to be revealed, and anticipate it with joyous confidence. Knowledge supplies us reasons for patience. How shall we have patience unless we know something of the sympathy of Christ, and understand the good which is to come out of the correction which our heavenly Father sends us? Nor is there one single grace of the Christian which, under God, will not be fostered and brought to perfection by holy knowledge. How important, then, is it that we should grow not only in grace, but in the *knowledge* of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

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