God will never allow me to face a temptation that is too much for me to bear. God provides me all I need to be able to stay strong through temptation. I can do my part by following four principles:
- Refocus my attention on something else. If I focus on the problem I will never defeat it. Rather than focus on the temptation I am to divert my mind and think about other things. When temptations arise I do not need to be ashamed to run from them. Have you ever tried not to yawn? If you think and think about yawning, you are going to yawn! The same holds true with temptation. The more I think about it the more likely I am to fall into it. I need to divert my mind and run away from the tempting thoughts or situations.
- Reveal my struggle to a godly friend or support group. I need to share my struggle with a friend so that person can pray for me, comfort me and hold me accountable. Confession is the first step to beating the problem.
- Resist the Devil. The Bible is the weapon God gives us to defeat the Devil. By memorizing Scripture I can keep my mind filled with the weapon I need to defeat the temptations Satan throws at me. I never want to argue with Satan – I need to defeat Him with the weapon God has given me.
- Realize my vulnerability. I need to realize that I am capable of any kind of sin. I cannot have a cocky attitude, believing that I am above falling into certain sins or I will let down my guard and Satan will use that to attack me.
When faced with temptation I need to have confidence in God – confidence that He can help me and that He has provided me with all that I need to escape.
Warren quotes the Bible eighteen times using seven translations and paraphrases. He uses a few loose translations, but on the whole quotes with reasonable accuracy and within the proper contexts.
Point to Ponder
Today’s point to ponder is “there is always a way out.” I believe a lot of Christians, myself included, take lightly the need to really know Scripture. I don’t mean a knowledge of what the Bible is about, but a knowledge of actual verses and chapters. The Bible is the only offensive weapon God has given us in our fight against the Devil and against temptation. It pays to know it, yet it seems that we know so little and minimize its importance. When we are faced with temptation we do not need to cower. We can have confidence in God and in His promises – but these promises are contained in the Scriptures and we will not know them if we do not know the Bible.
Having been raised in a Christian household I have a lot of Bible knowledge. I recognize many verses and can often tell who wrote them and what they mean. But my actual knowledge of specific verses is pitiful. Time and time again I have tried to start a program of memorizing Scripture, and time and time again I have not gotten far. Sometimes I have gone for mere days and other times for a few weeks, but the end result has always been that I have stopped. I have been thinking of finding a “memorization partner” – someone who also wants to memorize Scriptures and will hold me accountable as I hold him accountable for learning them. I wonder if that will reap better results…
Tomorrow’s topic is It Takes Time.