Wednesday, October 21, 2015

We're Always Being Tempted

Have you ever prayed for God to keep you from temptation but you fall into it anyway? You’re not alone. We know that the law is spiritual but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. I do not understand what I do. I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do — this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. So I find this law at work: when I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being, I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God — through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I am a slave to God’s law, but in the sinful nature a slave to the law of sin (Romans 7:14-25). When we pray to the Lord about temptation, He will give us strength to resist. We can either choose to use His strength or we can choose to sin. The result of giving into temptation is a sin. Sin separates us from God. The devil loves when we sin; however, being separated from God is far more than we can bear. “God spoke with Cain: ‘Why this tantrum? Why the sulking? If you do well, won’t you be accepted? And if you don’t do well, sin is lying in wait for you, ready to pounce; it’s out to get you, you’ve got to master it’” (Genesis 4:6-7). As it turned out, God was with Joseph and things went very well with him. He ended up living in the home of his Egyptian master. His master recognized God was with him, he saw that God was working for good in everything he did. He became very fond of Joseph and made him his personal aide. He put him in charge of all his personal affairs, turning everything over to him. From that moment on, God blessed the home of the Egyptian — all because of Joseph. The blessing of God spread over to everything he owned, at home and in the fields, and all the Egyptian had to concern himself with was eating three meals a day. Joseph was a strikingly handsome man. As time went by, his master’s wife became infatuated with Joseph and wanted to sleep with him. He wouldn’t do it. “He said to his master’s wife, ‘Look, with me here, my master doesn’t give a second thought to anything that goes on here - he’s put me in charge of everything he owns. He treats me as an equal. The only thing he hasn’t turned over to me is you. You’re his wife, after all! How could I violate his trust and sin against God?’ She pestered him day after day, but he still stood his ground. He refused to go to bed with her” (Genesis 39: 2-9). Joseph had asked for strength to resist temptation. With that prayer, the Lord gave him strength to keep temptation from overcoming him. I have to admit, most men would have slept with the woman. Then, they would have tried to justify the deed by saying, ‘Well, the Lord didn’t answer my prayers. What was I supposed to do?’

You were supposed to do that which you prayed not to do. You see, once we sin, it becomes a manifestation in your heart. Continual sin causes sin to live within you. When sin lives inside of us, we need to address that issue as well. We need God manifested in our hearts soul, minds, and bodies. There are diverse realms of temptation out there. This can cause God-loving people to fall into a trap of sin and denial from God. So, when we ask God to keep us from temptation, we should never lead ourselves into temptation. Joseph could have sleep with that woman, but he didn’t. His convictions to his master were far greater than the pleasure of sin. If you notice in the previous verses, she continued to ask him daily. Joseph had God with him; he didn’t need the pleasure of lust. We all have the ability to choose. Joseph prayed and asked God not to lead him into temptation. And just before temptation has a chance to seduce him, he said no. If he would have said anything else implicating that he might be interested, he might have fallen to temptation. His faith and relationship with the Lord meant more to him than temporary pleasures. I look at this small story and say, ‘Lord, lead me not into temptation. I want to respond to temptation as Joseph did!’ Become right with God and live your life according to the Word of God. If you are sincere, He will be there. J.Cyr, D.C.A (C) 2008

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