Summary: Dealing with temptation in daily life.
HOW TO HANDLE TEMPTATION
Introduction: An EXAMPLE of Temptation; How JESUS handled it.
I. THE FACT OF TEMPTATION.
A. Its Nature: Two ways the word "tempt" is used in the Bible.
· "God did tempt [test] Abraham" (Genesis 22:1)
· "God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He tempt anyone" to sin. Each one is tempted, when by his own evil desires he is drawn away and enticed." (James 1:13-14)
B. Its Universality: It happens to us all. (James 1:14)
· "No temptation has seized you except what is common to man..." (1 Corinthians 10:13)
C. Its Explanation: Why are we so easily tempted?
· Satan, " has blinded" our minds. (2 Corinthians 4:4)
· "The whole world is under the control of the evil one." (1 John 5:19)
· "I am... sold as a slave to sin...what I hate I do...it is sin living in me...that is, in my sinful nature...the evil I do not want to do this I keep on doing… it is no longer I who does it, but it is sin living in me that does it." (Romans 7 :14-20; James 1:14)
D. Its Danger; What's the big deal, if it happens to everybody?
· "Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation." (Mark 14:38)
· "After desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full grown, gives birth to death. (James 1:15)
· "I was afraid that in some way the tempter might have tempted you and our efforts might have been useless." (1 Thessalonians 3:5)
II. THE NATURE OF TEMPTATION.
· "The lust of the flesh" - an appeal to fleshly needs and desires;
· "The lust of the eyes" - an appreciation of & desire for beauty;
· "The pride of life" - an attitude of arrogance and inflated self-worth.
B. The Method of approach by which temptation comes is different for each person and circumstance.
III. HELP IN TIMES OF TEMPTATION.
A. Resolve to be pure.
· Settle the matter of your allegiance. Who is your Master?
n Matthew 6:24 - "No one can serve two masters."
n Romans 6:16 - "You are slaves to the one whom you obey..."
· "Daniel resolved not to defile himself... (Daniel 1:8)
· "My son, if sinners entice, do not give in to them." (Proverbs 1:10)
B. Resist the temptation.
· Fight the first impulse.
· Reject the evil thought before it becomes an evil deed.
· James 4:7 - "Submit yourself to God..." "Resist the devil, and he will flee from you."
· 1 Peter 5:8-9 - "Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith..."
· Ephesians 6:11 - "Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes."
C. Rely on God's strength.
· Ephesians 6:12 - "Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against.. the spiritual forces of evil"
· 2 Peter 2:9- "The Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptation."
· 1 Corinthians 10:13 - "God is faithful,; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out"
· Hebrews 2:18 - "He is able to help those who are being tempted."
· 1 John 4:4 - "Greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world."
D. Run from the source of your temptation.
· Sometimes running is an act of valor.
· Sometimes flight is the only sure deliverance from temptation.
· Temptation is often associated with a particular person or place.
· 2 Timothy 2:22 - "Flee the evil desires of youth..."
· Proverbs 5:8 - "Keep to a path far from her, do not go near the door of their house."
IV. ESCAPE FROM TEMPTATION. (I Corinthians 10:13)
A. God nowhere promises escape from temptation for the one who is careless, prayerless, or self-sufficient.
· Some enter temptation presumptuously - to show their power to resist.
· Others enter curiously - to taste the allurements of prohibited practices.
· Many are involved carelessly - taking no heed until the deed is done and guilt is involved.
· Some are involved imitatively - following the example of others.
· Yet others are involved pharisaically - pretending to show God grace through their sin.
REMEMBER - He who tampers with sin is certain to fall sooner or later. (Samson - Judges 13-17).
B. God nowhere promises escape from temptation for the one who cultivates it.
· Romans 13:14 - "...do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature."