Summary: Some things we need to know about temptation (Title and Material adapted from Alan Carr at: http://www.sermonnotebook.org/new%20testament/temptation.htm)
Mark Twain said, “I can resist everything except temptation.”
Salvation is not a barrier to temptation! On the contrary, Satan is more likely to attack the Christian that the unbeliever. After all, he already has the lost person! He loves nothing better than causing one of God’s children to fall into sin. However, temptation, while it cannot be completely avoided, can be overcome! While it is hard to endure temptation it can be used to help us grow in Jesus. Every Christian needs to know how to turn temptation into triumph.
When temptation arises, people usually respond in one of three ways. The primary method for dealing with temptation is to simply give in to it. Many live by an “If it feels good, do it,” mentality. They live like animals, doing everything they can to gratify the flesh. Nearly all lost people live like this, but sadly, so do many Christians!
Others struggle against temptation daily. They spend all their time fighting temptation in their own strength. They fight and fail, because no one can overcome temptation alone. If we could defeat the power of sin on our own strength, then it would have been pointless for Jesus to die for us. This type of person hates what he does, but he goes on doing it because he is unable to stop.
Finally, there are those who overcome temptation through the power of Jesus Christ. They turn their temptations into triumphs. This may sound like wishful thinking but we can win over temptation. It is possible to live in victory. Let’s think together this morning on this thought,
“How To Tame Temptation.”
Thesis: Some things we need to know about temptation
THE SUBJECT OF TEMPTATION (Who is affected by temptation?)
A. All humans are open to temptation. Adam and Eve, Abraham, Samson, David, Jesus, Peter- some refused the temptation and others gave into the temptation. All are tempted.
B. We are daily assaulted with a wide range of temptations. (A PRAYER FOR THE DAY
Dear God, so far today, I’ve done all right. I haven’t gossiped, and I haven’t lost my temper. I haven’t been grumpy, nasty or selfish, and I’m really glad of that! But in a few minutes, God, I’m going to get out of bed, and from then on, I’m probably going to need a lot of help.
Thank you! Amen.)
C. It is not a sin to be tempted. (James 1:13- When tempted) (“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.” Hebrews 4:15, NIV.) Sin enters the picture when temptation is surrendered to.
D. Our greatest danger is to think we have arrived at a place where we are above sinning, v. 12. “Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.” Proverbs 16:18, NIV. When our pride tells us that us that we cannot fall, then we are headed for trouble!
II. THE SOURCE OF TEMPTATION (From where do temptations come?)