Have you been facing some outrageous temptations lately? Temptations can arrive at our doorsteps at any given hour, any given day! The temptations that come at us can arrive physically, sexually, emotionally, spiritually. You name it, temptations can come into your life in any number of given ways and through anything that captivates your desires. The Scriptures tell us that we all face temptations. First Corinthians 10:13 says, “No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man.” Perhaps this provides a little encouragement as we often feel that the world is bearing in on us alone, and that others are immune to temptations. We are told that Christ was also tempted: “For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin” (Hebrews 4:15).
Where, then, do these temptations come from? First of all, they do not come from God, although He does allow them. James 1:13 says, “For God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone.” In the first chapter of Job, we see that God allowed Satan to tempt Job, but with restrictions. Satan is roaming on the earth like a lion, seeking people to devour (1 Peter 5:8). Verse 9 tells us to resist him, knowing that other Christians are also experiencing his attacks. By these passages we can know that temptations come from Satan.
How then do we resist the temptations? First of all, we must return to the example of Jesus being tempted in the wilderness by Satan in Matthew 4:1-11. Each of Satan’s temptations was met with the same answer: “It is written,” followed by Scripture. If the Son of God used the Word of God to effectively end the temptations—which we know works because after three failed efforts, “the Devil left him” (v. 11)—how much more do we need to use it to resist our own temptations? All our efforts to resist will be weak and ineffective unless they are powered by the Holy Spirit through reading, studying, and meditating on the Word.
Here, then, is the only means to guard our hearts and minds in order to keep the sources of temptation away from us. We need to renew our thinking as we are told in Romans 12:1-2. We must no longer think as the world thinks or walk in the same way that the world walks. We are easily carried away by our own lusts, desires and wants!
Facing a baffling and annoying temptation today? Want to talk about it? Russ Hobbs Ministries, e-mail me today for information at firstname.lastname@example.org