Posted by: SandreS | January 9, 2016

Contentment

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I have learned … to be content (Philippians 4:11).

Noah Webster defines the word “content” as:

Rest or quietness of the mind in the present condition; satisfaction which holds the mind in peace, restraining complaint, opposition, or further desire, and often implying a moderate degree of happiness … Acquiescence; satisfaction without examination.The American Dictionary of the English Language, 1828.

The Greek word autarkes is defined as:

Independent of external circumstances. – Joseph H. Thayer, Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, 4th edition, 1901.

Contentment is a rare quality among Adam’s descendants. Adam and Eve had an abundant bounty from the hand of God all around them in the garden. There was only one thing that was withheld from them – the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Yet this was the very thing that they wanted, the thing that they desired. This one thing kept them discontent: if only they could have this fruit their lives would be complete and fulfilled – or so they thought.

Discontentment is the Satanic work upon the Adamic heart; whereas contentment is the Divine work upon the renewed mind – a heavenly learning process. It was even necessary that our apostle complete this course of spiritual instruction.

Not that I speak in respect of want [need]: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ Who strengthens me (Philippians 4:11-13)

To which Paul added:

Having food and raiment let us be therewith content (I Timothy 6:8).

Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.

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