"No temptation has overtaken you except something common to mankind; and God is faithful, so He will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it." 1 Corinthians 10:13
Temptation will come to every believer and in the previous blog post we learned that temptation does not come from God. So what should we do when we are faced with temptation and what happens when we yield to temptation?
When faced with temptation, first you must recognize the source of temptation (1 John 3:8; Ephesians 6:12-13). We know ultimately the origin of temptation is from Satan. He tempts everyone with suggestions that are contrary to the Scriptures and with temptations that are appealing, that seem to either meet a desire that we have, or that may appear as a solution to a challenge we currently face.
These suggestions, known as temptations, are to ultimately convince you to believe the lies of Satan. If you yield to the lies of Satan, he weakens your faith by placing doubt in the character of God. When you doubt the character of God, you will subsequently sin against God by disobeying God. It is what Satan used in the Garden of Eden when he tempted Eve and asked, “Indeed, has God said…?”(Genesis 3:1), Later in verse 4 Satan also tempted Eve when he inferred that God could not be trusted and told her what God said was not true. Satan wanted Eve to believe that God was withholding something good from Adam and Eve. In this case, the “something good” was keeping Adam and Eve from being like God, when in fact they were already made in the image of God (Genesis 1:27).
As mentioned in James 1:14, temptation is when one is carried away and enticed by his own lust. In Genesis 3, Satan appealed to the lust Eve already had. Genesis 3:6 tells us that when Eve saw that the tree was good for food and a delight to the eyes, and desirable to make one wise, she took and ate and also gave the fruit to her husband who also ate. So Satan appealed to the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh, and the pride of life (1 John 2:16). As a result, we see that death occurred – spiritually and relationally.
Subsequently, yielding to temptation brought about broken fellowship with God, which is why Adam and Eve attempted to run and hide from the presence of God (Genesis 3:8-10; Proverbs 28:1). Instead of running to God, Adam and Eve ran from God. Thus, sin led to guilt, as well as broken fellowship with God, and conflict and chaos with each other.
So you ask, what should happen when temptation arises? We should do as Joseph did by resisting sin and fleeing from sin (Genesis 39:7-9). Notice that Joseph said that he would not sin against God. In this passage in Genesis we see that sin is ultimately sinning against God and not solely and only against others.
When temptation comes, we have to recognize the source and the reason the temptation is presenting itself. We know that it is not of God or from God, so we must resist sin, flee from sin, and put to death the sinful thoughts and desires that are contrary to the will of God (Colossians 3:5; Romans 6:12). Most importantly, we must run to God and not run from God to get His promised help in our time of need (Hebrews 4:14-16; James 4:7; 1 Peter 5:8-9; 2 Timothy 2:22; 4:18).
God is faithful and His word is true. He will always provide a way of escape when you are facing temptation. Recognize the source of temptation and run to God.
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