Summary: We all live on temptation island, so how is it that some live in DANGER and some know how to LIVE?
Fox Television has featured a series Living on Temptation Island recently which I am sure is hoping to draw from the tremendous audience of CBS Survivors Series. I haven’t spend my time watching the show but I have seen the weekly commercials which portray engaged couples being set on an island where they encounter various types of temptations, most it appears in a sexual content, to see if their marriages will last. From what it appears, temptations are winning over sensibility. And isn’t that the way it is with most people who live on this planet, a temptation island of our universe.
Paul, writing about the Israelites who went through the wilderness and had many defeated by temptation said this to us today in 1 Corinthians 10:11-13 These are all warning markers—DANGER!—in our history books, written down so that we don’t repeat their mistakes. Our positions in the story are parallel—they at the beginning, we at the end—and we are just as capable of messing it up as they were. Don’t be so naïve and self-confident. You’re not exempt. You could fall flat on your face as easily as anyone else. Forget about self-confidence; its useless. Cultivate God-confidence. (The Message)
I. The Danger of Life
Life is not a casual walk in the park. Along your life journey there are dangers, temptations which have been set up to draw you from your purpose in life. I want to highlight those dangers so you will not be ignorant.
D---Double minded in your thinking.
A double minded man is unstable in all his ways. James 1:8 (KJV)
What would cause someone to take a chance on their potential marriage, to be exposed to temptations foolish brought before them? In one of the commercials a participant said something to the effect, this would prove if their marriage would last.
When you start to question the yes of your yes and the no of your no, when you become double minded, the instability caused by your lack of positive decisions will open your life up to all kinds of temptations which you cannot stand against.
In the Garden of Eden the serpent comes to Eve and asks, Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’? –Genesis 3:1b. (NIV). Because Eve was not solid in her decision, all of mankind has paid for her and Adam’s double mindedness.
There is danger ahead if you don’t know what you stand for and what you believe. Society today is paying a heavy price for the instability in marriages. I was watching the Learning Channel where a 14 year old girl gave birth telling the interviewer she was just looking to be loved, she was not looking to get pregnant.
A --- Allurement for Momentary Pleasures
Speaking of Moses, Hebrews 11:25 states He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time.
Sin is an allurement. The danger is in seeking that momentary pleasure of sin, there is long term consequences down the road. It is a game of Russian roulette, eventually the bullet is going to fall into the chamber and once fired the end result is devastation.
This time of the year we see on the news the tragic results which come to some snowmobilers who race down the face of snow covered mountains ahead of the avalanches to whom the momentary pleasure of life ends their life prematurely. Am I saying it is a sin to race the snow? No, but it is a sin to die before your time.
Allurement of momentary pleasure could be staying in bed instead of fellowshipping with the body of Christ. It could be seeking self gratification over the needs of other people. Lets face it, some things are good, but others are better. Would you prefer to do the better or do you seek to do the best? There is a danger in living on temptation island. What you do now, will impact where you go later.
N --- Negative Influences in Your Life
George Washington said, “Associate yourself with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for ‘tis better to be alone than in bad company.”
Proverbs 29:3 When good people run things; everyone is glad, but when the ruler is bad, everyone groans.
Proverbs 13:20 Become wise by walking with the wise; hang out with fools and watch your life fall to pieces.
How true that is. When you are around negative people, they have a strong tendency to pull you down if you are not aware. The news was filled with the story of the Texas Seven who broke out of prison, killed a police officer and made it to Colorado where they set themselves up as a group of Christian men coming into the community. When captured, one killed himself and the other six now face the death penalty for the ill gotten friendship they had formed. These men represent a growing population of prisoners who are not in jail by themselves but came with so called friends who impacted their lives with their negative influence. It was two friends who went into Colombine High School and killed their fellow classmates, it is friends who pile into a car and drunkenly weave their way down the highway, it is friends who tell you church is old-fashioned, there is no god who take you down the well worn path of destruction and a final eternal destination in hell. Watch out for the danger signs, it is friends who encourage you to give into the temptation living here on temptation island.