Sermons

Summary: This sermon uses 1 John 2:16 (NKJV) to identify the 3 types of tempation that Eve, Christ, and us faced/will face. 1. Lust of the flesh. 2. Lust of the eyes. 3. Pride of life.

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Wednesday, February 25, 2004

Title: Ash Wednesday: Response to Temptation

Text: 1 John 2:16, Gen. 3:6, Luke 4:1-13

Introduction

1. Today is Ash Wednesday.

This begins a 40 day period of reflection, prayer, and fasting...

focusing on Jesus Christ and His life and sufferings leading up to the cross.

Some people make the Lenton season a time of dreariness, sadness, and depression...

But, just because we focus on Christ and His sufferings...

we also know the end of the story...

we know that Jesus Christ rose again...

and in fact, the 6 Sundays during Lent are not counted in the 40 days...

because Sunday is always a reminder of Jesus’ Resurrection...

This doesn’t lessen the importance of repentance...

self-discipline...

and self-denial...

but it does place these things into the larger picture...

and the big picture is one of victory and celebration.

2. Luke 4:1-13 tells the story of the temptation of Christ in the wilderness...

And, while Jesus spent 40 days in the wilderness...

Lent is traditionally seen at joining Christ in the wilderness for 40 days.

And I certainly encourage you to join Christ in a time of prayer...

fasting...

meditation...

and reflection...

but for our purposes tonight...

I would like to focus on the temptation aspect.

Read Text: 1 John 2:16 (NKJV), Gen. 3:6, Luke 4:1-13

3. 1 John 2:16 describes temptation in 3 ways:

1. The Lust of the flesh...

2. The Lust of the eyes...

3. The Pride of Life...

4. These temptations are common to all people......

Body

1. The Lust of the Flesh

A. In Genesis 3:6, Scripture tells us that Eve "saw that the tree was good for food"

Here’s Eve, in the Garden of Eden...

a place of beauty and wonder...

a paradise...

the sun is shining...

it’s warm...

the lush garden in all it’s splendor...

and Eve is just minding her own business when Satan comes to tempt her.

He begins to cast doubt on God’s motives for making certain commands...

And, as the doubt takes hold in Eve’s heart...

she "saw that the tree was good for food"....

The lust of the flesh...

You know...I can identify with Eve...

although for me...an apple is not all that tempting...

for me, it’s pizza...

or a Big Mac...

I can be driving down the middle of town...

and even though I have enjoyed a nice meal...

perhaps soup and a salad...

I’m content...

I’ve certainly eaten enough to sustain life...

the food was pleasing and tasty...

but all of a sudden...

those yellow arches come into view...

and I begin to think about a Big Mac...

or that red roof will begin to call to me...

"wouldn’t a meat-lovers pizza be good about now"?

B. But we aren’t alone in our tempation...

Scripture tells us that For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are--yet was without sin" Heb 4:15 (NIV)

Here’s Jesus...enjoying a time of prayer and communion with God...

He hadn’t eaten for 40 days...

Because He knew that fasting was a way to develop Spiritual discipline...

and helps to draw us closer to God...

And Scripture tells us that Jesus was just minding His own business...


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