Tag Archives: why are we tempted

Staying On God’s Path

I’ve driven Houston’s roadways for years. I can tell you that they are always under construction. Many times it’s slow going when trying to get through the city. Not too long ago, my wife and I were driving north on the West Loop. We were talking and I didn’t notice that where they had swapped sides of a multi lane exit. Instead of continuing on the loop, I found myself on another road. I had to exit that road, make a u-turn and get back on the right road or I never would have made it. Not much further up the road, I observed another person dart from the left lane across to an exit from the right lane. It was sudden and without warning. I have to admit, it’s happened to me once or twice where I saw an exit and took it without warning putting myself and others in danger.

Satan uses temptation a lot like these exits. As you’re making progress in your spiritual walk, sometimes it can be slow going where you feel like you’re not getting anywhere. He uses temptation to get you to detour and e it from the path God has for you. There are times when you slowly exit without even realizing you’re taking it. Before you know it, you’re on the wrong path. Then there are times when you see something and quickly fall for it. Temptation has been used by the devil since the beginning to keep us from where God is leading us. To be tempted is to be human. It isn’t sin until you fall for it and take the exit. The great news is God is always willing to forgive when we repent and take a u-turn to get back on the path He has for us.

Here are some Bible verses on temptation.

1. God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.

James 1:12 NLT

2. Guide me away from temptation and doing evil. Save me from sinful habits and from keeping company with those who are experts in evil. Help me not to share in their sin in any way!

Psalms 141:4 TPT

3. But we are tempted when we are drawn away and trapped by our own evil desires.

James 1:14 GNT

4. Leaving there, he went, as he so often did, to Mount Olives. The disciples followed him. When they arrived at the place, he said, “Pray that you don’t give in to temptation.”

Luke 22:39-40 MSG

5. The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.

1 Corinthians 10:13 NLT

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Resisting Temptation

Every one of us are tempted to sin. Because we are unique, we are tempted with different things, but often it’s in the same way. Temptation starts by causing us to doubt what God said and tries to make us think that there is something better than what God has already blessed us with. If we don’t stop those thoughts immediately, we start moving towards sinning. We try to justify why we deserve whatever it is. We then convince ourselves that what we have is not enough. We continue down this road until we give into the temptation and sin. Deep down we know it’s wrong, and so many times the actual sin is anticlimactic because we’ve built it up in our mind so much. The problem then is that we have to deal with the consequences of that sin. Temptation is not a sin. What we do with it could be.

In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve had all they could ever hope for. They were surrounded by God’s beautiful creation and provision, yet they were convinced that what God had given them was not enough. They wanted more. Genesis 3:6 says, “And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was delightful to look at, and a tree to be desired in order to make one wise and insightful, she took some of its fruit and ate it; and she also gave some to her husband with her, and he ate” (AMP). They entertained the thoughts of temptation that led them to sin. They bought into the lies that God was withholding something good from them and that they deserved to have more than what God gave them.

Fast forward a couple thousand years to Matthew 4, and as Jesus comes up out of the waters of baptism, the Spirit led Him into the wilderness. He was in a barren place deprived of God’s provision, food and beauty. The same enemy came to Him to create doubt about who He was and what God had promised Him. The difference was that Jesus didn’t entertain those thoughts. He immediately went to what God said as truth, and He trusted the character of a God to not withhold any good thing from Him. He saw temptation for what it is, an attempt to break our relationship with God. He fought back with God’s Word and didn’t try to justify the sin based on where He was in life, what He was going through or what He felt like He deserved.

You and I have a promise we can hold onto during times of temptation. 1 Corinthians 10:13 says, “No temptation [regardless of its source] has overtaken or enticed you that is not common to human experience [nor is any temptation unusual or beyond human resistance]; but God is faithful [to His word—He is compassionate and trustworthy], and He will not let you be tempted beyond your ability [to resist], but along with the temptation He [has in the past and is now and] will [always] provide the way out as well, so that you will be able to endure it [without yielding, and will overcome temptation with joy].” You don’t have to give into temptation. You have the ability to resist. You are able to endure it and can overcome it. Trust that what God has given to you is enough. If you don’t feel like it is, then be like the two people in the Parable of the Talents who took what the Master gave them and multiplied it. Your future is based on your choices and thought life. Don’t give in to the lies the enemy brings. Trust God and speak His promises, resist the devil and he will flee.

Photo by Nadine Shaabana on Unsplash

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