Temptation, it’s something a lot of us face day in and day out. And when we’re in it, it can feel like we’re fighting for our lives. Fighting for our status as children of God. Well, what does the bible say about temptation? Let’s spend some time in 1 Corinthians 10:13 to find out what the bible says about temptation.
1 Corinthians 10:13 – No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation, he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.
What the Bible Says About Temptation
No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man.
First of all, whatever you’re going through, you’re not the first one to go through it and you will not be the last. While you’re in it, it might feel like the world is just out to get you and no one understands, and you just don’t see a way out. But remember, we’re all enduring the same things to varying degrees.
This also makes me think about James 1:14 which says
But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire.
You know what I see there? The devil has no power. He’s not creative and he cannot lead us astray. The power lies in us, via the Holy Spirit. When we find ourselves drifting away from the Lord, and towards our desires, it is because we have prioritized the wrong things in our lives. These desires are pretty much the same across the board, they might manifest in different people in different ways.
So when you’re struggling with those lustful desires, or angry thoughts, or that greed or jealousy… whatever it may be. Remember that you’re not the first one to go through it.
God is faithful.
Faithful in Hebrew comes from the word pistos. Pistos means one who is worthy of trust, someone who can be relied on.
There are no qualifiers here. It doesn’t say God is faithful when life is hard, or God is faithful only in the good times, or God is faithful for your friends alone. Nope. It says God is faithful. The end. This means that we can always rely on Him and trust in Him.
And oftentimes, when we’re going through something, we might feel like God isn’t watching, or that He has forgotten us. But then, when we look back on previous hard times, you can always pinpoint how God came through for you in that situation. Isaiah 55:8 – For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. While we’re going through hard times, we might have an idea of how we expect God to come through and fix things, however, remembering that God is faithful and His ways are not our ways should bring us a sense of peace.
Because what those 2 verses show us are that 1. God is going to come through no matter what, and 2. He’s most likely not going to come through in a way that we expect.
And He will not let you be tempted beyond your ability.
This is such an interesting phrase, it’s pretty much saying: if you’re not facing temptation, then God doesn’t think you can handle it. Folks, that’s not a good thing! If you can’t handle some adversity, you’re still a baby Christian and unless you’ve just given your life to Christ, that’s not where we want to be in our walk with Christ!
In 1 Corinthians 3:2-3, Paul says
I fed you with milk, not solid food, for you were not ready for it. And even now, you are not yet ready, for you are still of the flesh.
And then in Hebrews 5:13, he says again For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the basic principles of the oracles of God. You need milk, not solid food, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil. Writing this made me really understand when James said Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds in James 1:2.
Friends, when you’re facing what seems like a major tribulation, it’s a good thing! It definitely won’t feel like that while you’re in it. But the thought that God thinks you are mature enough to handle the adversity is great. It means you’re doing something right!
You’re getting stronger and more mature in your faith and soon you will be teachers. I mean how can we expect, as Christians, to teach others how to handle adversity if we haven’t faced it ourselves? We need that experience and that testimony of making it through, in order to encourage others that they can make it through also.
Cause remember, “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man”. Someone else is coming, who will face what you are facing. It’s all part of the program. And each time you overcome temptation, you add another A to that transcript and are one step closer to that degree. (Lol, forgive the school metaphors, I’m just back in school and it’s all shiny and novel right now).
But with the temptation He will also provide the way of escape.
When we’re in adversity, instead of focusing on what’s going wrong in our lives, we need to be looking for that way out that God has placed somewhere for us. And in order for us to find a way out, through God, we need to be in the Spirit.
And to be in the Spirit, our minds and hearts must also be in the Spirit.
For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, set their minds on the things of the Spirit – Romans 8:5.
When we’re facing hard times and finding it equally hard to find a way out, that’s a sign. A sign that we need to stop, focus inward and ask ourselves, “What have I been prioritizing in my life?” Don’t you know that friendship with the world is enmity against God? – James 4:4.
Once we’ve taken stock, it’s time to fix up. Maybe you haven’t been spending enough time in the word, or praying enough, or worshipping enough. I know for me, it can often be a combination of all three. It might even be a case of not serving enough. When we find what aspects of our lives we’ve placed the world above God, we need to rectify that. During the process of rectification, God’s way out will show up. We don’t need to go out looking for a way out of temptation, we need to look inward. Focus our hearts back on God, and He will make a way.
That you may be able to endure it.
We’re not meant to avoid temptation, we’re not meant to run away from it. James 1:3 lets us know that the testing of your faith produces patience. And let patience have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. If we run away from temptation, we miss out on a chance to become better Christ followers. So when you find yourself realizing that your desires have led you astray, and you have fallen into temptation. Don’t try to hide from it, or wish it away. Stick it out, remember that God has a way out somewhere and this is your time. Your moment to move through temptation with Grace. Your chance to look inward, and realign yourself. Get back in line with Christ. And you’ll come out of it a better Christ follower.
Prayer: Lord, I thank you for those times I fall into temptation, for I know it’s a sign. It’s a way for me to understand that I’ve started prioritizing my needs over your desires and it’s time to make a shift. I ask that when I do fall into temptation, I’m able to recognize those parts of my life where I’ve started to neglect you and that the strength of the Spirit will help me make the necessary adjustments. Amen.
Friend, how are you feeling after reading what the bible says about temptation? Leave a message below and let’s chat about how you rely on the Holy Spirit to help you through those hard times.
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