Summary: Temptation is defined as. “something that seduces or has the quality to seduce; the desire to do or have something you know you should avoid; the act of influencing by exciting hope or desire.
NEW THINKING FOR A NEW YEAR
Genesis 3:1-7 Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, "Did God really say, ’You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?" 2 The woman said to the serpent, "We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, 3 but God did say, ’You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’" 4 "You will not surely die," the serpent said to the woman. 5 "For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil." 6 When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.
INTRODUCTION: Temptation is defined as something that seduces or has the quality to seduce; the desire to do or have something you know you should avoid; the act of influencing by exciting hope or desire.
Temptation is all around us; both historically and actually! We cannot get away from it. From the myriad of commercials to the aroma of a hot dog in a stadium, temptations are ALWAYS there
AS we look at avoiding temptations -- changing our thinking in order to avoid them, I would like to share three realizations about temptation, and 4 mistakes we make when seeking to resist temptations.
I TEMPTATION REALIZATIONS
A The Ultimate Source Of Our Battle Is Satan
1 One of the keys to winning ANY battle is to know who your real enemy is
a Jesus says it best -- Matthew 3:10 The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.
b To deal with only the symptom is to only delay the issue
2 Jesus understood this principle
Matthew 16:21-23 From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, chief priests and teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life. 22 Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. "Never, Lord!" he said. "This shall never happen to you!" 23 Jesus turned and said to Peter, "Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men."
a Jesus understood that Peter was not the root of this attempt to keep Him from the cross
b Peter was just the messenger
c Satan was the real problem
3 Text says that the devil was more crafty than any of the other creatures
a Word has the meaning of subtle
b The noun has the meaning of wisdom
c The thought is that the devil has the ability to use knowledge in a subtle way to bring about a negative result.
4 Adam and Eve were NAKED (a similar form of the word for crafty)
a The nakedness of Adam and Eve was evident in that they did not know "crafty". They did not know where the traps were.
b Satan would use that against them (and against us)
B The Devil Is Smarter Than We Are
1 The Devil knows the Word of God
Matthew 4:5-7 Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. 6 "If you are the Son of God," he said, "throw yourself down. For it is written: "’He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’" 7 Jesus answered him, "It is also written: ’Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’"
2 The Devil knows the weakness of man
a The Devil knows the hidden desires of man
Job 1:11 But stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face."
Job 2:4 "Skin for skin!" Satan replied. "A man will give all he has for his own life.
1 Take away a man’s things and he will turn from God
2 Take away a man’s health and he will curse God