TEMPTATIONS & HOW TO OVERCOME THEM
~ The Victory Is Ours Through Our Lord Jesus Christ
>>> SCRIPTURAL DEFINITION OF TEMPTATION
- What's Temptation?
"TEMPTATION" is an act of tempting.
To "TEMPT" means:
(i). To Entice (James 1:14)
(ii). To Beguile (2 Peter 2:14)
(iii). To Allure (2 Peter 2:18)
Meanwhile, The English Dictionary defines the word to "TEMPT" as:
* To (try to) persuade or attract to do something;
* To make (someone) want to do (something).
>>> SCRIPTURAL FACTS U NEED TO KNOW ABOUT TEMPTATION:
1. Temptation is an enticement to do something evil, sinful or bad which is contrary against God's word, God's will & God's way. It is simply a suggestion to do evil.
2. Temptation is not a sin but yielding to it, to its enticement & allurement is a sin.
3. Temptation is common to everyone born into this world, both young & old, sinners & saints, believers & unbelievers alike.
The difference is that the sinners are already under the devil's control so they can't resist temptation but the saints can easily overcome if only they rely on Christ for victory.
4. Temptation comes to us all on daily bases, each day has its own new challenges & this could be in different stages or levels.
>>> SOURCES OF TEMPTATION:
1. From SATAN, the devil (Matthew 4:1,3)
- He's our archenemy, the enemy of our soul & he tries to tempt us so that we can sin against God & come short of God's glory, thereby, the gate of Heaven will be closed against us.
- He also sends his own evil spirits, & demons to tempt us to fall into sin. The devil doesn't force us to yield, he only suggests to us & if we're interested, that is when we will fall.
2. From MEN (Mark 8:11)
- There could be some evil men who will like to tempt us, they could be inspired by satan to cause us to fall.
3. From SELF LUST (James 1:13-15)
- This is the strongest ever bcos it is the ENEMY WITHIN US & it is more powerful than all the enemies around. It is our very desires, passions & longings that may turn to lust & the devil can capitalize on this to tempt us.
>>> SEVEN (7) STEPS IN TEMPTATION (James 1:14,15)
That somebody fell into sin doesn't just happen overnight or suddenly, it started STEP-BY-STEP, from one STAGE TO ANOTHER STAGE. It is a process, though sometimes this process can be so fast, that is why u have to watch over ur heart for out of it are the issues of life.
We shall consider these 7 STEPS in details:
Step 1. TEMPTED: Thought of evil
- It begins with the mind's eyes, what u see & perceive, the lust of the eyes & it sends it to the heart. Then as the heart ponders or meditates on it, it brings forth THOUGHT OF EVIL within ur mind.
The mind is actually a battlefield where the devil fights hard against us.
As a Christian, u must have a pure & holy heart to be able to resist the devil whenever he tries to introduce thought of evil inside ur heart & mind.
Step 2. DRAWN AWAY: Strong imagination
- After the thought of evil is introduced, if not quickly resisted, it'll generate to STRONG IMAGINATIONS.
That's why u can see a girl or boy looking at the opposite sex & imagining that person was naked...that's immoral thoughts, evil imaginations.
And the Bible says in 1 Corinthians 10:4-5 that we shd CAST DOWN EVERY EVIL IMAGINATIONS BY THE WEAPONS OF OUR WARFARE.
Don't allow any imagination contrary against God's word, will & way in ur life but u are to CAST IT DOWN IMMEDIATELY so that u'll not be DRAWN AWAY by it.
Step 3. LUST: Delight in viewing it
- At this point in time, u've been tempted already & u are drawn away bcos u allowed evil imagination to incubate or develop within ur heart & then u now delight in viewing it, u kind of have pleasure in looking at it. Ha, u are already on ur way to falling.
Step 4. ENTICED: Weakening of the will
- In this stage, ur God-given free-will as a 'Free Moral Agent' becomes weakened & u have no power to say 'NO' bcos u hv already surrendered ur will to satan, the tempter by letting thought of evil, strong evil imagination & u delight in the sin...That is why it bcos practically irresistible for u but to yield.
Step 5. LUST CONCEIVED: Yielding
- After the weakening of ur will to say 'NO' u'll yield , submit & surrender urself to that temptation.
BUT the Bible says in ROMANS 6:12-16, that:
(i). We shd not let sin reign in our mortal body to obey its lusts (verses 12)
(ii). We shd yield ourselves to God as instruments of righteousness & not to satan & sin (verses 13,16). Yield to God ur will. Satan cannot force ur will, & God will not, so the safe & normal thing is to will to do God's will (Matthew 7:21; 1 John 2:17).
(iii). We shd not permit sin to dominate or control us by any means (verses 14). God delivers us from sin at the new birth (conversion), so if u become subjected (yielded) to it again, it is bcos of ur choice.
(iv). We shd not use the grace of God as an opportunity to be committing sin but continue to ask for more grace to live free from all sin (verses 15).
Step 6. SIN: Sinful act committed
- Lo & behold, comes the actual act or sin; it is so unfortunate that often times we have fallen into sin by yielding to the temptations of the devil.
If we commit sin, them we are now of the devil & no longer for God, except we repent afresh.
Step 7. DEATH: Result of actual sin
- For the Bible says in ROMANS 6:23 that:
"For the wages (salary or pay, reward or recompense) of sin is DEATH; but the gift of God is ETERNAL LIFE through Jesus Christ Our Lord."
- Now, there are 3 KINDS OF DEATH in Scriptures:
(a). PHYSICAL DEATH, separation of the inner man from the body (James 2:26). Sin shortens life.
(b). SPIRITUAL DEATH, separation from God bcos of sin (Isaiah 59:2; Matt.8:22; Col.2:13; 1 Tim.5:6).
(c). ETERNAL DEATH, eternal & everlasting separation from God bcos man chooses to remain separated from God in sin (Matt.10:28; 25:41). This is also called the SECOND DEATH SECOND or SEPARATION FROM GOD (Rev. 2:11; 20:14; 21:8).
>>> STRENGTH TO OVERCOME &HOW TO OVERCOME TEMPTATION
The Lord has promised to help us to overcome all temptations. He said with all the temptations, He'll make a way for us to escape falling. IT IS HIS WILL FOR US TO BE VICTORIOUS AT ALL TIMES.
Now, this is HOW TO OVERCOME TEMPTATION:
1. Abstain from all appearance of evil or sin
- Resist thought of evil & Run away from places or people of 'potential' sin.
2. At the moment of temptation, just before u yield, stop & ask urself, 'WHAT WOULD JESUS DO?'.
Ponder, consider & still ask urself if what u're abt to get urself, 'IS IT OF GOOD REPORT?', 'WILL I STILL BE HOLY IF I DO THIS?'
4. Always approach the Throne of Grace & Mercy Seat to ask for Grace & Supernatural Strength To Help U In The Hour Of Temptation.
>>> SEVEN (7) SECRETS OF VICTORIOUS LIVING, EVEN OVER ALL TEMPTATIONS:
1. Stand fast in the liberty of the gospel & renounce all things that try to put u to bondage (Gal. 5:1-3).
2. Maintain justification (ur sanctification, holy life) in grace & obey the truth (Gal. 5:4-15).
3. Walk in the Spirit (Gal. 5:16-17) - Every step u take, let it be in the Spirit.
4. Be led by the Spirit (Gal. 5:16) - Allow the Holy Spirit to lead u in all things, don't do it urself bcos ur 'SELF' can fail u but the SPIRIT OF GOD can never fail u.
5. Crucify the flesh with the affections & lusts (Gal. 5:19-21,24) - Be crucified with Christ, let Him deal completely with that inbred, adamic nature of sin that is the cause of ur falling & besetting sin.
6. Demonstrate the fruit of the Spirit in ur daily Christian life (Gal. 5:22-23).
The 9fold Fruit of the Spirit includes: Love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness & temperance.
7. Live in the Spirit (Gal. 5:25-26). Daily as u live, as often as u breathe, let the Holy Spirit of God be ur guide, live & abide in Him.
>>> MY SINCERE PRAYER FOR U ALL:
"Lord Jesus, am presenting everyone reading this post now before ur THRONE OF GRACE & MERCY SEAT,
Lord, I ask by faith in the unfailing Name of Jesus, that as many who are having difficulties to overcome temptations & it seems that they do not have spiritual backbone or stamina, I pray that from today henceforth, u will change them completely and give them the DIVINE ABILITY, LIVE STRENGTH OF POWER FROM ON HIGH, FRESH OIL & ANOINTING TO BEGIN TO LIVE A VICTORIOUS CHRISTIAN LIFE IN THE MIGHT NAME OF JESUS...Amen, Amen & Amen!!!"
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