“And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.”
Billy Sunday stated: “Temptation is the devil looking through the keyhole. Yielding is opening the door and inviting him in”. Webster's Dictionary describes temptation as: “to entice or allure to do something unwise or wrong”.
I am sure you can think of many temptations that “entice or allure” you. An example for me is: many restaurants serve yummy homemade desserts. You know those kind that have the chocolate syrup draped artistically all over the top of marshmallow-whipped cream? Now that sounds mighty good, does it not? It seems to me that all of those particular eateries must know when I am arriving to dine, because they have a place to display their specialties near the front entrance so I will have to stroll directly by them. I don't know about you, but for me, that is a real temptation!
Every day many people are tempted to say or do “something unwise or wrong.” God's people should never think that they are exempted from temptation. Life brings a series of temptations that try to shake up our faith, or even weaken it. Charles H. Spurgeon stated: “It seems to me that the...temptations of this life are preparing us for the life to come, building character for eternity.”
Jesus encountered many temptations throughout His life on earth, and He never yielded to them. Let's study His strategy in one detailed example in Matthew when Satan tempted Him in the wilderness. The Devil tempted Him three times and they were: (1) to change stones into loaves of bread to reduce His hunger and to “prove His sonship”; (2) dared God to rescue Jesus if He jumped off from the highest point to “test God”; and (3) he wanted Jesus to worship him “to prove equality with God.”
How did Jesus resist those three temptations? Jesus responded to Satan each time by knowing and applying God's Word for strength to battle each one. His response of comprehending and using Scripture provides an example for all of God's people to follow to fight the encounter. It is one way that you can express your faith by removing the power of the temptation. Frederick William Faber stated: “Every moment of resistance to temptation is a victory”.
When temptation pops up the next time, be encouraged; the person who stands up under temptation is blessed by God and they will receive “the crown of life that God has promised to those who love Him”. Knowing this it will make it much easier to “walk by the desserts.”
Lord God, thank You for Your written Word to assist us to be able attack the daily temptations. Amen.
~ Ann Brock