All day long we are attacked! Everyone deals with temptation and they come at us from every direction. Even our Lord dealt with temptation.
Luke 4:13 – when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from Him until an opportune time.
Hebrews 4:15 – For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are–yet he did not sin.
Where do temptations come from?
It might come in the form of a billboard on the highway with a picture of a greasy hamburger that will ruin your diet. Or perhaps it may be that car parked in the dealership along the side of the road that is way beyond our budget.
We can be tempted by the desire for praise for something we feel we have done particularly well.
And of course, it could be in the form of an attractive woman, we want to take a second or prolonged look at.
Temptations are not necessarily a bad thing, nor are they a sign of weakness, but it is wrong when we give into those temptations which are outside the will of God. And if we choose to give into temptation, guilt and shame are certain to follow. Satan knows where our weaknesses lie and is constantly trying to trap us. But if we handle temptations correctly/Biblically, we will grow in faith!
God’s Word provides ample ammunition to warn us against the attacks of Satan.
Matthew 6:13 – lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
1 Timothy 6:9 – those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction.
How do we combat temptation?
The Bible also is filled with verses to guide us in order that we can defend against temptations.
2 Timothy 2:22 – Now flee from youthful lusts and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.
1 Corinthians 7:2 – because of the temptation to sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband.
Matthew 26:41 – Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
Mark 9:43 – If your hand causes you to stumble, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out.
Perhaps most importantly, God’s gives us encouragement in this constant struggle with temptation.
1 Corinthians 10:13 – No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.
Luke 11:4 – forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive everyone who is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation.
The greatest Biblical encouragement however, is God’s promise of forgiveness and that He will never hold sin against those who have accepted salvation through Christ.
Psalm 103:12 – as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
So, in closing, we know from scripture that temptations will most certainly come, it is unavoidable. God tells us what we need to do to defeat Satan’s attempts to draw us into sin. We need to accept Jesus as Savior and Lord, and allow Him to strengthen us. And when we ask Jesus to be our Savior and Lord, He washes away the stain of our sins and never holds them against us.