A man without self-control
is like a city broken into and left without walls.
The analogy of this proverb could be no more clear. It is dramatic. Self-control protects a person from being invaded, overrun, and destroyed. Ancient cities had walls to protect against enemy invasion. A city without them was an easy target. It would be invaded. Walls kept the city safe, its citizens protected, and its culture intact.
Personal self-control is just like that for the soul. It protects a man from invasion. And Satan and the sinful systems of this world love nothing more than to find a man without walls. His soul is easy pickings. He's as good as already broken into. Without self-control, the battle is already lost.
Self-control is vital. Discipline of the heart, hands, and emotions is not easy. But we are not alone. We have an ally Who does most of the hard work for us: The Holy Spirit. You see, we already have a strategy to keep enemies away from the city of the heart. It is the Word of God. And we have the power of the Holy Spirit to lead us away from temptation. We also have the grace of Jesus Christ that forgives, redeems, and patches broken spots (I have so many) in the walls of our self-discipline so that we need not fear (2 Timothy 1:7). The Spirit of self-discipline will keep us from invasion.