Originally posted December 7, 2015
Genesis 2:16 … The Lord God commanded the man, saying, “From any tree of the garden you may eat freely; but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die.”
Genesis 3:4 … The serpent said to the woman, “You surely will not die!
Animals (humans) are driven by many desires. Desires or lusts can be for food, sex, material items and just about anything else you can think of. So often no matter what we have, we want more. If you make $20 an hour, you want $30. If you have a $25,000 car, you want a $40,000 car. A bigger house, a newer TV, the latest gadget, and so on. Wanting more isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but if this desire becomes an obsession (or idol) than it becomes sin.
This desire for more, sadly, often effects people in their relationships. A married man wanting another woman, or married woman desiring a man other than her husband. Being tempted is not sinful, but acting on this or even entertaining the thought is.
Matthew 5:27-28 … “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery’; but I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.
When we allow temptation room to breathe, we enter a very dangerous situation.
James 1:14-16 … But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death. Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren.
The only sure way to avoid allowing temptation to become sin, is by fleeing it. A great example of this was Joseph. Joseph was given everything by his master, with one exception; that being, the Master’s Wife. But when faced with temptation and a chance to sin he fled.
Genesis 39:7-9 … It came about after these events that his master’s wife looked with desire at Joseph, and she said, “Lie with me.” But he refused and said to his master’s wife, “Behold, with me here, my master does not concern himself with anything in the house, and he has put all that he owns in my charge. There is no one greater in this house than I, and he has withheld nothing from me except you, because you are his wife. How then could I do this great evil and sin against God?”
Potiphar’s wife was no doubt very attractive and if Joseph had given in, he may have gotten away with it. But Joseph knew he could not avoid being found out by God. And pleasing God was Joseph’s number one desire.
As Christians, we need to take every step possible to avoid allowing temptation to become sin. We cannot escape all temptations, but we can strive to keep clear of avoidable temptation.
Psalm 119:37 … Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things; and give me life in your ways.
When we accept Jesus as Savior and Lord He provides strength and wisdom for us to battle all the evils of this world. We must, however, do our part and use this strength and wisdom. Most importantly, we need to realize that following Jesus is not a matter of giving up anything, but rather it is about getting everything!
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