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About-Him.Com Devotional 10-22-2011

God Does Not Tempt Us to Sin

Last week we dealt with temptation as in overcoming the trials of life. This week we’ll cover being tempted to sin against God.  

Text: James 1:13 ¶  Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:  

It seems to me that if I were to accuse God of tempting me with evil, that my understanding of Him is very limited.  

Text: James 1:14  But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.  

Note that every man is tempted. No one is immune from it.  We came to Jesus and were cleansed by His blood and filled with His Spirit. After our initial rejoicing, we realized that the tempter was still hanging around. As 1 Peter 5:8 tells us, we must be vigilant, because the devil is going about as a roaring lion, seeking whom he might devour. He doesn’t care what church you go to or what creed you profess, he wants to devour your soul. He wants you to keep him company in hell.  

James said that every man is tempted and drawn away of his own lust. We sometimes hear those who think they are so far removed from sin that nothing can tempt them. Sadly, they eventually prove themselves wrong.  John said that if we say that we have no sin, we are a liar and the truth is not in us (1 Jn. 1:8).  

2 Corinthians. 2:11 reminds us that we are not ignorant of Satan’s devices. We may have been slow learners, but after tripping up a few times, we caught on. We can easily recognize the temptation that is trying to rise up in our hearts. As active as Satan is in trying to make us fall, quite often it’s not him but ourselves with whom we must deal. James 4:7 tells us to resist the devil and he will flee from us.  

Most of us realize that as Paul stated in Romans 7:20,  sin still dwells within us.  But we also know the One who gave His life’s blood to deliver us from temptation and sin. Jesus told Peter that Satan desired to sift him as wheat, but that He had prayed for him, that his faith would not fail (Lu. 22:32). Jesus also knows what trials and temptations we are facing. What a comfort to know that He is praying for us also (Ro. 8:34).  

Hebrews 2:18 For in that He himself hath suffered being tempted, He is able to succour them that are tempted.  

1 Corinthians 10:13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God [is] faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear [it].

Adam Clarke quotes an old rabbinical saying to the effect that:  temptation first appears as harmless as a single strand of a spider’s web, but later proves to as strong as the rope that draws a cart.  

Text: James 1:15  Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.  

If we look at the obituaries in the local newspaper, we see  that many people are dying in their late teens and early middle age. It is evident  that many of them have died because of drug and  alcohol abuse. Satan got them hooked by an alluring temptation and only Jesus can deliver them, before it’s too late. How much better, to nip the temptation in the bud.  

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin [is] death; but the gift of God [is] eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.  

Text: James 1:16  Do not err, my beloved brethren.  

Do not err in thinking that anything evil can come from God. When He finished the creation, He looked upon His handiwork and pronounced that it was good. His whole creation was perfect. He took delight in communing with man who was created in His image. When sin entered the world, everything changed, but Jesus died to restore the fellowship with God, that Adam enjoyed before he sinned (1 Co. 15:43).  

Text: James 1:17  Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.  

When James calls God the Father of lights, it appears that he is comparing Him to the sun that warms us all. However, the sun varies in its effects. It can be hidden by clouds. It scorches us in summer and then retreats to the opposite end of the globe in winter. God’s light is constant. He does not vary. Jesus Christ the same, yesterday, today and tomorrow (He. 13:8). His abiding Spirit is our Comforter, who teaches us and brings to remembrance all that He commanded (Jn. 14:26).  When temptation threatens to overwhelm us, He is ever present to help us (Mt. 28:20).  

Text: James 1:18 Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.  

James is writing to Jewish readers and reminding them that the gospel was first presented to them. The word creature here refers to the gentiles. He is urging his Jewish readers to set an example to the gentiles converts. God who created all things after the pleasure and counsel of His own will (Ep. 1:3-11), created us all in His image. He expects us as redeemed Christians to reflect His image and His attributes to everyone that we meet. Just as He doesn’t vary, neither should we. A whole lifetime of good can be wiped out by one careless moment of weakness. One soul can be caused to reject the gospel as a result of momentary indiscretion on our part.  

2 Corinthians 3:3 [Forasmuch as ye are] manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart.  

1 Timothy 4:12 Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.

Somebody Has Said
If we do not abide in prayer, we will abide in temptation. Let this be one aspect of our daily intercession: "God, preserve my soul, and keep my heart and all its ways so that I will not be entangled." When this is true in our lives, a passing temptation will not overcome us. We will remain free while others lie in bondage. - John Owen

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Don and Marie Spooner
About Him! Ministries

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