From Eve to Jesus Christ to us, the temptation is a universal problem. It is an issue common to every man (1 Corinthians 10:13.) Basically, temptation falls into the three categories of the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye, and the pride of life, (1 John 2:150 Both Eve and Jesus were exposed to all three temptations at once. But, the temptation is not sinning itself! It is the avenue to sin. You can win the battle over temptation by following several simple rules. Today’s message is about those rules. [A sermon by Dr. Arnold Lastinger. Used with permission]
1. Use the Power of the Word of God
A. Jesus quoted the scriptures in all three temptations “…It is written…” (Matthew 4:1-11)
B. David memorized the Word of God as a defense against temptation (Psalms 119:11)
C. Both examples indicate that strength requires you to get in the Word and the Word in you.
2. Don’t Overestimate Your Strength
A. Man is a three-part being (Physical, spiritual, emotional), and the majority rules!
B. No matter how religious you are. Your own strength can’t help you (1 Corinthians 10:12)
C. No one can be careful enough to not fall. We need the supernatural strength of God.
3. Avoid any Compromising Situations
A. Most Christians fall into sin because they get into situations conducive to sin.
B. Consider David leering at Bathsheba or Peter warming his hands by the sinners’ fire.
C. Consider Joseph who ran like crazy, from Potiphar’s wife. Don’t bargain with sin.
Call to Action
You must exercise control over this! Given below are a few practical tips to help to defend yourself against the most common temptations.
- If you don’t want to commit adultery, then avoid that business lunch with your secretary.
- If you don’t want to commit the sin of fornication, make sure you stay away from the lover’s lanes.
- If you don’t want to drink, stay away from people who do and places where they do. Throw away your cigarettes and avoid smokers.
- If you don’t want to lust, throw away that Playboy magazine under your mattress and avoid the R and X-rated movies.
- If you don’t want to gossip, don’t allow your conversation to degenerate. Control your tongue.
- “Run like crazy”. You will be glad you did. (Now this is more than just home-spun humor, it is godly wisdom.)
Perhaps you have succumbed to Satan’s temptation. Jesus stands ready to forgive. Furthermore, He will give you the strength to rise above future temptations.
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