He Who Rules His Spirit, Is Better Than He That Takes A City, A word of encouragement To The Humble Prayer Warriors
Pro 16:32 He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; And he that ruleth his spirit, than he that taketh a city.
He that ruleth his spirit, than he that taketh a city - It is much easier to subdue an enemy without than one within. There have been many kings who had conquered nations, and yet were slaves to their own passions. Alexander, who conquered the world, was a slave to intemperate anger, and in a fit of it slew Clytus, the best and most intimate of all his friends, and one whom he loved beyond all others.
And the following from Ovid is not less striking: -
Fortior est qui se, quam qui fortissima vincit
Moenia, nec virtus altius ire potest.
“He is more of a hero who has conquered himself, than he who has taken the best fortfied city.”
Beyond this self-conquest the highest courage can not extend; nor did their philosophy teach any thing more sublime.
He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty,.... Than a mighty warrior or conqueror; as Alexander who conquered his enemies, and even all the world, and yet in his wrath slew his best friends: a man that is slow to anger is esteemed by the Lord, respected by men, and is happy in himself; and is preferable to the strongest man that is not master of himself and of his passions;
and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city; one that has the command of his temper, that can govern himself, and not suffer his passions to exceed due bounds, is superior in strength to him that can storm a castle or take a fortified city; it is easier to do the one than the other; courage of mind joined with wisdom, and assisted by a proper number of persons, may do the one; but it requires the grace of God, and the assistance of his spirit, thoroughly to do the other. Cicero says (t), in all ages
"fewer men are found who conquer their own lusts than that overcome the armies of enemies.''
(t) Epist. l. 5. Ep. 4.
This is one of the most profound and in-depth truth in the whole of scripture, O.T. and esp. N.T.
Jas 3:5 So the tongue also is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how much wood is kindled by how small a fire!
Jas 3:6 And the tongue is a fire: the world of iniquity among our members is the tongue, which defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the wheel of nature, and is set on fire by hell.
Jas 3:7 For every kind of beasts and birds, of creeping things and things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed by mankind.
Jas 3:8 But the tongue can no man tame; it is a restless evil, it is full of deadly poison.
Jas 1:19 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath:
The sins of the tongue has been preached on and wrote on all through out history, so what can humbly add to these other works?
And he that ruleth his spirit, than he that taketh a city.
Break your head, not so sore;
Break your will - that is more.
(Note: “Zerbrich den Kopf dir nicht so sehr; Zerbreich den Willen - das ist mehr.” - Matth. Claudius)
meditate on that tidbit of truth.
The words ,Than he that taketh In the Hebrew is very interesting.
מנּי מנּי מן
min minnı̂y minnêy
min, min-nee', min-nay'
For H4482; properly a part of; hence (prepositionally), from or out of in many senses: - above, after, among, at, because of, by (reason of), from (among), in, X neither, X nor, (out) of, over, since, X then, through, X whether, with.
The root word gives some insight and is rich in content.
From an unused rot meaning to apportion; a part; hence a musical chord (as parted into strings): - in [the same] (Psa. H68 : H23), stringed instrument (Psa. H150 : H4), whereby (Psa. H45 : H8 [defective plural]).
Being a musician and recording artist, music has been a part of my life since I was in the first grade and has never left, I love music, as many of you do. It is odd the root word hear is taken from a Chord of music, and of a stringed instrument, I play guitar and piano, both are stringed instruments, so it really becomes personal.
What does it all mean?
1Co 13:1 If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am become sounding brass, or a clanging cymbal.
1Co 13:2 And if I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
Paul uses the same analogy, of love and music, in fact, being a recording engineer, this is speaking of proper instrument levels, Paul is speaking a revelation concerning music. There is nothing worse than a poorly recorded song, if the drums, cymbals are to loud it can destroy a song, Paul goes even deeper into the science of audio engineering, yes I kid you not, as I will show another portion of scripture from the same epistle that alludes to my thought, this is going somewhere stay with me, OK.
1Co 14:7 Even things without life, giving a voice, whether pipe or harp, if they give not a distinction in the sounds, how shall it be known what is piped or harped?
1Co 14:8 For if the trumpet give an uncertain voice, who shall prepare himself for war?
1Co 14:9 So also ye, unless ye utter by the tongue speech easy to understood, how shall it be known what is spoken? for ye will be speaking into the air.
whether pipe or harp, if they give not a distinction in the sounds, how shall it be known what is piped or harped?
This portion speaks of the need to clearly understand what instrument is being played, in recording arts, this is known as a proper mix, also the masking audio effect, that happens when you have several instruments in the same HTZ- KHZ sample rate, example, an electric Guitar playing the rhythm, the same Hertz as a normal male voice, a keyboard effect, or pad sound, takes the say KHZ, lets say around 2 to 2.5 Khz. What happens is some of the sound will mask, cover over the other instruments, you listen to the mix and you can not hear the difference between the instruments and voice, this is compensated, by changing slightly the Hertz, by using EQ adjustments, and, or using re-verb, to have an instrument set in the back of the stereo spectrum more, slightly panned left or right, its all about hearing, being able to make out the distinctive sound of each instrument and vocal.
Paul is talking recording science hear by revelation, and yes observation from hearing music.
Now to control your spirit, oddly enough this is the meat of the message in I Corinthians ch 14, the spirit of the prophets are subject unto the prophets, the gift can be controlled, all was to be done decent and in order.
This keeping your spirit under control, free from anger, Gossip, sinful conversation, pride of the lips, is of supreme importance.
It is so important to keep yourself under the subjection of Christs authority, it is said to be, better than a man, a warrior who takes a city.
That is profound, as many of us pray that we may take a city for Christ, correct, ...this is a good thing, but what happens after the city is Taken?
Is it taken and later ruled by doctrines of men, denominational constitution and bylaws, or is it truly taken in love for Christ?
Dear reader, the most attractive attribute of any Christian is Humility, wise words, a gentle loving manner, a Christ like Character and nothing can compare to this.
You may be a stay at home mom, a prayer warrior for the lord, you may think what good am I doing for the kingdom of the lord, I see others in great ministries, taking whole towns for Christ, and hear I sit alone, kneeling hours a day in holy humble prayer, Guess what, if it were not for the prayer warrior, if it were not for the prayer covering of those who are silent in public arenas, there would be no ministry success, and no taking of any city, town , village, Church or even a home.
This should encourage all who feel they are just little prayer warriors, look I can do nothing apart from Christ and as Paul often requested prayer, we who take cities for Christ could never do so, if it were not for you, the humble prayer warrior, the person that knows they are nothing and Christ is all. The arm needs the shoulder, and an anointed mouth in prayer is needed by the footmen on the front line of Evangelism and bold, yet loving preaching in sound doctrine.
According to our text verse, you are actually better than someone who takes a city, not a totem poll , but in the lords eyes and favor, one day you will know your labor, prayers, self control was indeed not in vain.