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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature


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the disposition of the mind, the sum of our inclinations and tendencies, whether natural or acquired. The word is seldom used by good writers without an epithet, as a good or a bad temper. Temper must be distinguished from passion. The. passions are quick and strong emotions, which by degrees subside. Temper is the disposition which remains after these emotions are past, and which forms the habitual propensity of the soul. See Evans, Practical Discourses on the Christian Temper; and the various articles (See FORTITUDE), (See HUMILITY), (See LOVE), (See PATIENCE), etc. Temperance (ἐγκράτεια, self-restraint), that virtue which a man is said to possess who moderates and restrains his sensual appetite. It is often, however, used in a much more general sense, as synonymous with moderation, and is then applied indiscriminately to all the passions. "Temperance," says Addison, "has those particular advantages above all other means of health, that it, may be practiced by all ranks and conditions at any season or in any place. It is a kind of regimen into which every man may put himself without interruption to business, expense of money, or loss of time. Physic, for the most part, is nothing else but the substitute of exercise or temperance." In order to obtain and practice this virtue, we should consider it,

1. As a divine command (Philippians 4:5; Luke 21:34; Proverbs 23:1-3);

2. As conducive to health;

3. As advantageous to the powers of the mind;

4. As a defense against injustice, lust, imprudence, detraction, poverty, etc.;

5. The example of Christ should be a most powerful stimulus to it. e . z

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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Temper'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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