We are born with uniquely distinct strengths and weaknesses. There are four basic temperaments known as Sanguine, Choleric, Melancholy, and Phlegmatic. We will all bare a bit of each of them, having one or two more dominant than the other.
Four Temperaments Theory Chart
The Psalmists David says it clearly why the study of a man is one of the most fascinating experiences because of Psalm 139:14-16 (NIV),” I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.”
Our temperament is a combination of our inborn traits that subconsciously affect our behavior, and are arranged based on genetic and hereditary factors. Some factors determine if we are outgoing and extroverted or shy and introverted for example. Meanwhile, our character is who we really are. The biblical term might be considered our “soul” the essences of who we really are, the hidden man of the heart. Still yet our personality is the outward expression of ourselves, which may or may not be the same. Our reputation is who other people say we are where as our character is who we really are.
Jesus Christ spoke of us being “born again”. Natural birth determines our nature. Being “born again” determines our new nature. Our natural sin nature that dwells in us just by the sheer fact that we are human, is our natural weakness. Like every member of the fallen race, we inherit our sinful nature from our parents (the first being Adam and Eve). This is a basic temperament we all have inherited.
Many of us act the part that we “think” people want us to play, even to the point of being contrary to our own authentic nature, often times by emotional and mental pressure or just life itself. We may use our background as an excuse for our present behavior or actions. That is an excuse that really should be done away with once we receive Jesus Christ as our personal Lord and Savior. Once we have received Christ as Lord and Savior we have a new nature, we are born again and now have a new power (The Holy Spirit) within us that enables us to change our conduct/behavior (temperament) that is spirit controlled. This is GREAT NEWS!
This is what the Bible refers to when it says Romans 12:2 (NIV), “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” Then, you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing and perfect will.” This- in effect- is how we mature in Christ.
Allowing the fruit(s) of the spirit to take root in our lives is where we will start with having a spirit controlled temperament. If the fruit(s) of the spirit is not at work (or evident) in our lives then we are not living with a spirit controlled temperament.
We are born again. Old things are passed away. We are new creatures in Christ. We are transformed.
It is easier to reach our goal if it is well defined and kept in mind. We must make our goal of manifesting the fruit of the Spirit. Note, “fruit” is single and the object plural. In 1610 when the King James version of the bible was translated from Greek to English the time of harvest was called the time of fruiting. The text might better be read “the harvest of the Spirit.” We are not to cherry pick which of the nine we want to cultivate. All nine are to be manifested in our lives. We must fix them in our minds by any means.
Prayer: Since it is promised in Ezekiel 36:27 that God will put HIS Spirit within us and cause us to walk in His statute, pray that He will do it by His almighty power. Hebrews 13:21 And now may the God of peace…equip you with everything good that you may do His will, working in you that which is pleasing in his sight through Jesus Christ. Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me (Psalm 51:10) In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen.
*Stay tuned as we will cover all four temperaments and the fruit(s) of the spirit throughout this series and how we can apply them to our lives.
In His loving Service,
Afua R. Jones