The wisdom of the prudent is to give thought to their ways (Proverbs 14:8).
Are you frustrated in your efforts to resist temptation? Do you feel alone in your struggles to over come sin?
It can be frustrating to intensely want to overcome a temptation, and then fail again and again. Do you feel that you cannot overcome the temptation to sin? This can be hard if you are a Christian and feel discouraged in your desire to grow in the Lord and overcome sin.
If you sometimes find yourself in this position, it may be because you do not go beyond making good intentions or vague plans. You are not putting God first within your life. However, giving in to your own desires. Ask yourself now how can I honor god? Does this desire honor god or me? Once you find the answer to that question you may say, “I’ll try harder,” or, “I have to do something about this.” In addition, you may pray for hours. Or you simply may mutter a quick prayer without much thought. This is only the beginning to overcoming temptation. You need to spend more time learning about the sin, what it means to our heavenly father. Meaning spend some time studying the word.
Good intentions and prayer are not enough. Make a plan! Good intentions and prayer are important in your struggle against sin, but be sure to also make a precise, practical plan about how you will battle the temptations in your life. When you combine prayer, determination and a plan based on God’s Word, you will find victory.
The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty (Proverbs 21:5).
An upright man gives thought to his ways (Proverbs 21:29).
To begin making your plan pick one temptation to work on. Have you ever made a long list of changes you want to make? Most of us have done this and soon have felt overwhelmed by trying to do so much. Start slowly, one step at a time instead. Baby steps.
Personal application: Write one temptation you want to overcome: __________________________________________( Write the temptation you want to start with.)
Analyze your temptation/sin patterns that you want to change. With most sins and temptations there is a revolving door. It happens again and again. If you can identify the patterns when you sin, you will be able to make a better plan. Even if a temptation seems to come out of nowhere, if you pray and think about it, you can identify patterns in your actions. Also, you can identify situations that cause you to feel temptation. This can help you understand why you sin and how you sin. Then you will be able to over come temptation.
For example, you may discover that each time you think someone mistreats you, you “give yourself permission” to become angry, get drunk, flirt with someone else or engage in a sex sin. Ask yourself who am around when I am tempted to sin. Are you more likely to sin when alone or when with certain people? Do you give in to peer pressure? When do you feel you are tempted the most? You have to analyze these situations in order to over come them.
Let not my heart be drawn to what is evil, to take part in wicked deeds with men who are evildoers; let me not eat of their delicacies (Psalm 141:4).
Ask yourself Who am tempted to sin with: __________________________________________
Where are you tempted:
Where are you usually tempted to commit this sin:
Once you identify these try to stay away from dangerous situations if you can. Separate yourself from these situations that tempt you if possible. If not be alert, watch and pray.
In the paths of the wicked lie thorns and snares, but he who guards his soul stays far from them (Proverbs 22:5).
The next step is to identify the places I am tempted: __________________________________________
Where are are you tempted to sin? What time of day are you tempted the most to sin? Once you identify these things you can then you should fill these times with prayer or worship. Even if it just means you have to sing a praise song to yourself.
Next step ask yourself why am I tempted: __________________________________________
What causes you to sin? Is it anger, bitterness, loneliness, or depression. Identify the source that causes you to sin. Do you have any excuses for your sins? Remember, in the beginning Adam blamed Eve and said “the woman you gave me, gave me the fruit and I did eat.” He even blamed God. Take responsibility for your actions.
Do not justify your sin? Do not say well if this person wouldn’t have done whatever, I wouldn’t have responded int the way I did. Remember you have a choice. Only you can be held accountable for your actions. Do you realize you are rebelling against God when you sin?
Therefore, he who rejects this instruction does not reject man but God, who gives you his Holy Spirit (1 Thessalonians 4:8).
Next step ask yourself why I am tempted-my excuses for sinning: __________________________________________
Ask yourself what are the first steps you might take on the path to sin:
Ask yourself what is your thought process before you sin:
Ask yourself what are the steps I might take on the path to sin: __________________________________________
To overcome your temptation find scriptures verses to read and memorize.
When you find Bible verses that speak to you personally about holiness and the particular sin you will have victory. Keep an eye open for verses that jump out at you.
When you find some verses, read them regularly. Memorize them. Don’t feel guilty if you can’t memorize them all. I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you (Psalm 119:11).
Meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it (Joshua 1:8).
Make a list of actions to overcome temptation:
Make a list of things you can do in your daily life to avoid dangerous situations: __________________________________________
Consider how you will resist when tempted:
Don’t mess around with sin. When tempted, flee! Therefore, my dear friends, flee from idolatry (1 Corinthians 10:14). Flee the evil desires of youth, and pursue Righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart (2 Timothy 2:22).
Make a list of ways I do to resist sinning if I am tempted: __________________________________________
The English word temptation is derived from a Latin word meaning to put to the test, or to try, as in a trial. To taunt comes from the same word. Within in the bible temptation generally means solicitation to do evil.
“And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil”
The “Lord’s Prayer” speaks of a deliverance from the evils of temptation:
“Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy Name
Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven Give us this day our daily bread And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever.
Amen.” (Matthew 6:9-13 KJV)
A good thing to remember is that God will not allow you to be tempted more that you can take. Also, God always gives you a way to escape when your tempted to sin.”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.” (1 Corinthians 10:13 KJV)
The “temptation of Christ” by Satan was done the same way we are tempted. It was a genuine contest (that included Satan quoting Scripture to Jesus Christ, see below) that Satan lost, but could have won. Satan would not have tried had he thought there was no chance he could win.”And Jesus being full of The Holy Ghost returned from Jordan, and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, Being forty days tempted of the devil. And in those days he did eat nothing: and when they were ended, he afterward hungered.””And the devil said unto him, If thou be the Son of God, command this stone that it be made bread.” “And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.” “And the devil, taking Him up into an high mountain, showed unto Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said unto Him, All this power will I give Thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it. If Thou therefore wilt worship me, all shall be Thine.” “And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind me, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve.” “And he brought Him to Jerusalem, and set Him on a pinnacle of the Temple, and said unto Him, If thou be the Son of God, cast Thyself down from hence: For it is written, He shall give His angels charge over thee, to keep thee: And in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.” “And Jesus answering said unto him, It is said, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.” “And when the devil had ended all the temptation, he departed from Him for a season” (Luke 4:1-13 KJV)
Remember all Christians continue to struggle with temptation, sometimes to the point of feeling helpless to win. You may feel it’s difficult to resist, but remember it’s not impossible. The Bible gives us encouragement in the battle with temptation. God provides the coaching of the Holy Spirit that says, “You can do it!”
And God also provides the warning, “You are accountable to God for your response to temptation.” Heed God’s warnings The place to start is with a sober reminder of the consequences of sin. Think about happens when you fail to resist temptation?
James 1:15 says, “it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.” The death warned of in this verse has a wide range of meaning. It can be the death of peace within, the death of self-respect, or the death of positive influence in the lives of people we love. For those who never trust Christ as their rescuer from sin, death means separation from God’s Spirit, the interminable terminal illness that is hell. The harsh reality of sin’s danger is strong motivation to resist temptation.
Paul describes four instances from the Exodus and wilderness wanderings of the people giving in to temptation and facing death and disaster (1 Corinthians 10:7¬10). He says these were typical examples of the consequences of sin. They are warnings for all of us to heed that God holds us accountable for turning against him (10:6, 11).
One of the ways God uses to guard and keep us for salvation on the last day (1 Peter 1:5) is the real and dire warning that willful sin leads to death. Those who belong to God hear and obey. Therefore, “if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!” (1 Corinthians 10:12). Take responsibility for your actions and don’t blame others. If there not holding a gun to your head they are not forcing you to sin against God.
Remember always it’s your choice who you honor. You have free will to honor either our heavenly father, who is worthy of praise. Or the father of lies, who thinks he’s worthy worthy of praise and is not. The choice is yours, be blessed everyone.