Are you like me, and hate tests? I love the time of learning in a classroom. Hearing new information, and implementing those principles in my life to make me a better man, and a wiser servant of the Lord. But I hate the tests that are associated with learning. I just want to learn. I have often said that I would just like to audit life. Get all the learning without any of the tests.
In our Spiritual development Temptation becomes the tests to find out how we are learning. Don’t you wish you could go through life without it? I don’t know about you, but I long for the day, when everything I do, and everywhere I go can be without the temptation to sin. Sometimes I feel like there is no one who totally understands the struggle that I have with temptation. However, I must understand that I struggle with temptation because of my inner struggle with my flesh, just like everyone else. But there is good news!
According to 1 Corinthians 10:13: “There is no temptation that comes upon us but such as is common to man!” These words of reassurance, means that whatever we are going through we are not the first to pass this way. Countless people have felt the pull of the same temptation that you are struggling to overcome. The devil has a way of slipping the blinders onto our heads so that we see nothing else, but Paul writes, under the ministry of the Holy Spirit, that temptation is the oldest trick in the book. While temptation is a “humanity thing” it comes with the ability to overcome. J. Wilber Chapman once said, “Temptation is the tempter looking through the keyhole into the room where you are living; sin is your drawing back the bolt and making it possible for him to enter.” You cannot avoid someone coming to your door or looking through the keyhole – but you do control the deadbolt.
This means that every temptation is a fork in the road, it is the presentation of a choice of which road to travel: the high one or the low one. Sometimes I believe that life would be easier if there were no forks, no decisions to make – if the road were simply a straight and narrow path, then I would have an easier life. Yet without these tests we would never know how much we have learned, and how much we have grown. Victory never becomes easier, but it does become more rewarding.
The victory is not won by might or by power, but by the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit, as that Spirit empowers us to obey the Word of God.
In Matthew 4 we see the temptation of Jesus, and each and every temptation that came upon him was overcome as He remembered, quoted, and accepted for Himself the clear teaching of God. While there is no magical power in the quoted Word of God, we know that the Word of God has power to transform lives, and give strength to overcome the temptations that come upon us.
So, what are we to do today? We must spend time in the Word of God so that we may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. Don’t be afraid of the tests, prepare for them and then approach them with caution, but confidence that you can do what the Lord enables you to do.
Have a great day, and may God bless.