“Truth and Tactics Concerning Temptation”

Temptation is the spiritual plague of Christianity. The only way to overcome temptation is the application of the Word of God via the vehicle of the Holy Spirit. Thank God for Jesus.
I actually received this word from the Elijah List Email in which I participate. I have heard James Goll minister, he is used mightily by the power of God to transform lives.
"Truth and Tactics Concerning Temptation" 
–James Goll
February 4, 2006
Encounters Network
Five Foundational Truths

Concerning Temptation

At times, it is important that we have a firm foundation in our life, family, and ministry. In times of transition, it is also imperative that we re-look and even re-establish a solid foundation in our lives. I want to redefine some moral boundaries so that we do not become deceived by the enemy. Sound good? Then proceed ahead with me to look at Five Foundational Truths Concerning Temptation.

1. God Tests, but Never Tempts

Whereas, God may test our faith, but He never tempts us.

James 1:13 states:

"…Let no one say when he is tempted, ‘I am being tempted by God’; for God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone." James 1:13

The purpose of divine testing is to sanctify and strengthen. James 1:2-4 tells us:

"Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing." –James 1:2-4

The purpose of satanic tempting is to deceive and destroy (John 10:10).

2. Temptation Begins in the Flesh

Temptation almost always begins in the flesh.

James 1:14 explains, "But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust." Our flesh sets fire to sin. Satan then simply fans the flame higher.

3. To Be Tempted is Not a Sin!

Temptation, in and of itself, is not sin! Jesus was repeatedly tempted (Hebrews 2:17-18; 4:15), but He was sinless.

Martin Luther once stated, "You can’t prevent the birds from flying over your head, but you can keep them from building a nest in your hair."

"A temptation only becomes sin when we accept it, when we fondle it, when we enjoy it." –a quote from Martin Lloyd-Jones.

4. The Essence and Strength of Temptation

The essence and strength of temptation is two-fold:

a. The enticement to satisfy legitimate needs through illegitimate means.

b. The enticement to push virtues to the extreme of religious legalism with unquestioned acceptance. 

5. The Problem of Giving into Temptation

The more often we say "yes" to a temptation, the more difficult it becomes to say "no." Sin is addictive and habit forming. It builds to ever increasing dimensions. It has a hardening effect on the soul of the individual (Hebrews 3:12-13). It is a lie at the core. It offers one thing and produces another.

Satan Especially Likes to Tempt Us…

1. When our faith is young–when the Christian is newly or recently converted (I Timothy 3:6).

2. When our faith feels strongest–when we think we are invulnerable to sin (I Corinthians 10:12).

3. When we are in an alien environment and culturally unaware of the enemy’s schemes in a given region.

4. When our faith is being tested in the fires of affliction:

a. Physical affliction (Matthew 4)

b. Spiritual affliction (Job 2:1-10)

5. Immediately following great spiritual highs and lows. Heed the lessons of Elijah in I Kings 18 and 19.

6. Perhaps Satan’s most effective tactic in tempting us is to put his thoughts into our minds and then blame us for having them.

a. See I Chronicles 21:1, Matthew 16:13-23, John 13:2, and Acts 5:1-3 on Satan’s ability to put his thoughts into your mind.

b. "When thoughts or inclinations contrary to the will and ways of God creep in, many dear Christians mistake these miserable orphans for their own children and take upon themselves the full responsibility for these carnal passions. So deftly does the devil slip his own thoughts into the saints’ bosom that by the time they begin to whimper, he is already out of sight. And the Christian, seeing no one but himself at home, supposes these misbegotten notions are his own. So he bears the shame himself, and Satan has accomplished his purposes." –William Gurnall author of The Christian in Complete Armour

c. The devil’s scheme is to speak in the "first person" and trick us into thinking that the statements are about us.

7. A related tactic of temptation is for him to launch his accusations as if they were from the Holy Spirit. How do we distinguish between satanic accusation and Divine conviction? Remember: God’s conviction eventually releases "hope," while the enemy’s fruit of accusation ultimately is condemnation.

When Too Much of a Good Thing Becomes a License for Licentiousness/Lawlessness

Most of us won’t often be tempted to commit blatant sins such as robbery, murder, or rape. Satan is too clever and subtle for that. He knows that we will recognize the flagrant wrong in such temptations and refuse to act on them. Instead, his tactic is to entice us to push something good beyond the boundary of the will of God until it becomes sin.

He treats us like the proverbial frog in the pool of water–gradually turning up the heat of temptation, hoping we don’t notice that we are approaching the boundary of God’s will and jump out before something good becomes sin. When those boundaries are erased, then the devil typically moves on to other expressions and temptations that previously we would not have even considered.

The following statements reveal the sinful results in a number of areas where we are tempted to take the good things that God created beyond the boundary of God’s will:

1. Physical rest becomes laziness

2. Quietness becomes non-communication

3. Ability to profit becomes avarice and greed

4. Enjoyment of life becomes intemperance

5. Physical pleasure becomes sensuality

6. Interest in the possessions of others become covetousness

7. Enjoyment of food becomes gluttony

8. Self-care becomes selfishness

9. Self-respect becomes conceit

10. Communication becomes gossip

11. Cautiousness becomes unbelief

12. Positiveness becomes insensitivity

13. Anger becomes rage and bad temper

14. Loving-kindness becomes overprotection

15. Judgment becomes criticism

16. Same-sex friendship becomes homosexuality

17. Sexual freedom becomes sexual immorality

18. Conscientiousness becomes perfectionism

19. Generosity becomes wastefulness

20. Self-protection becomes dishonesty

21. Carefulness becomes fear

22. Spiritual compatibility becomes illegal soul ties

23. Freedom becomes an occasion for the flesh

24. Improper intimacy in relationships breeds false spiritual union

25. Encouragement turns to flattery

26. Pursuing goals becomes a "driving spirit"

27. You are more impressed with the words coming out of you than you are the Word coming into you. (Prophetic words become a replacement for the written word.)

28. Success-motivation becomes boastful pride of life

29. Emotional Healing ministry becomes a "rescuer mentality"

30. The Healing Touch becomes a "familiar touch or spirit" in a wrong place and with a wrong motivation

By James Goll
Encounters Network

Author: oneway2day

I am a Neoconservative Christian Right blogger. I also spend a significant amount of time of exposing theopolitical Islam.

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