Temptation Has Met Its Match
May 10, 2020 AM
Pastor Craig Ledbetter
Bible Baptist Church, Ballincollig, Cork, Ireland
I. Introduction (1Corinthians 10:13)
A. It is so much better to have victory over temptation than only forgiveness for sin
1. Don’t get me wrong
a. There is no greater feeling than when a great wrong has been forgiven
b. When great love has covered someone’s sin
2. But that is not where a Christian lives
3. We live beyond forgiveness
4. We are supposed to live in victory over sinful habits, sinful words, sinful attitudes
5. AND, we are supposed to live in victory over temptation as well
B. So, the Bible teaches us to beat sin at the point of temptation
C. Last week we just began the first part of this powerful verse of Scripture
1. “There hath no temptation”
2. “Taken You”
3. “Common to Man”
D. Now Comes the Best Part…
A. Meaning of Temptation
1. ‘Anything that activates a wrong passion in me’ is a temptation
a. Anything that makes sin reasonable to my mind
b. Anything that lures me to disobey God or His will
c. It is the turning of my attention away from the will of God, onto anything else – no matter how good it may be
1) Temptations don’t always involve gross sins. They involve getting you and me to just do something other than what GOD said I was to do, or to say, or to think!
2) THAT is very important to understand
d. Temptation is the pull on my heart and my nature to do something wrong
1) It is the cheese in a mouse trap
2) It is the worm, on the hidden hook
3) It is the flirt and hug just before the pregnancy and std
2. It is like a Strong Magnet
a. Sin is like a magnet - very strong magnet
b. My nature is like metal – easily pulled by the magnet
c. How is anyone supposed to resist the pull of a magnet? I AM GLAD YOU ASKED!
3. Is separate than sinning – it is the ‘allurement’ to a sin
4. It is the short path from where you are, to where sin is
5. It MUST be defeated, or we are doomed to constant ruin
B. It is Common – everyone is tempted
1. No one free from temptation while in this world
2. EVERY Christian is tempted – pulled, grabbed, drawn away from the will of God
a. There is not a single person alive that does not in some way battle manifold waves of temptations at different times of their lives
b. But every person who is breathing, is both tempted, and struggling whether to give in to it
3. Even Jesus was tempted – felt the pull of the world the flesh and the devil, YET WITHOUT SIN
4. FACT: You and I are tempted far more than we realize – or that we are willing to admit! We just are so used to it, and don’t mind playing with fire in life!
C. Temptation is an Extremely Powerful Force
1. Temptation is extremely powerful – as I said, it’s powerful like a strong Magnet
2. It can trap you, and gut you, ruin you in 5 seconds flat!
3. It can ruin your marriage
a. It doesn’t take only adultery to ruin a marriage
b. All temptation needs to do is turn your attention AWAY from what you are supposed to be doing for your spouse, and things will start falling apart!
4. It can ruin a life-long friendship
5. It can ruin a holiday
6. It can ruin a savings account – just the temptation to gamble your money away
7. And… It can ruin a sane heart and mind – many a Christian has self-destructed simply because they thought a little sin wouldn’t hurt anybody
8. Worst of all, it is powerful because people let it win them over – you allow it to ruin you!
D. Why? Why is Temptation So Powerful?
E. The Power Behind Temptation – the pull against us!
1. It would be so nice if we just battled the temptation to eat too much
a. Or to eat an entire bar of Cadbury’s chocolate
b. Or to binge-watch stupid tv programs for hours on end
c. Or to lie about where you have been all day
d. Or to be lazy and not read your Bible or hand out a Gospel tract
2. That would be great!
3. But those things are NOT what we are actually battling against
4. We are battling against:
a. Satan, the Tempter himself – all of the forces of hell are at his disposal
1) Matthew 4:1-3 Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred. And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.
b. Our Own Nature
1) The Bible calls it, the Old Man in me – the old ME!
2) We are dust – no real strength – just the illusion of strength and will power
3) We are like a PAPERCLIP, next to a Magnet
4) We are naturally attracted to sin – that is why temptation is so hard to resist
a) Romans 7:14-19 For we know that the law [GOD’S LAW] is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin.
b) Romans 7:15 For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.
c) Romans 7:16 If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good.
d) Romans 7:17 Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.
e) Romans 7:18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.
f) Romans 7:19 For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.
g) You and I are so messed up on the inside
5) It is my nature…
a) To be selfish – I think of myself first – it is what I naturally do!
b) To lust after what I should NOT have
c) To use anger as a weapon
d) To hold grudges
e) To criticize and judge other people
f) To be lazy
g) To ignore the needs of others and focus mainly on only my needs and wants
h) To be constantly out of balance in my life
6) It is very hard to just go against my nature
7) It can be done, but only with much firm training (DOG TRAINING, ARMY, FIRE BRIGADE)
c. Our Feelings and Needs
1) If you ever try and reason with someone who is hungry, you are wasting your time. They just want some food. It will drive them to do many wrong things!
2) If you ever try and reason with someone who has been abused, you are out of your league – they just want someone to weep with them
3) Loneliness is a powerful force – that will get you in serious trouble if you follow it
4) Our feelings and needs are very powerful forces that are nearly impossible to go against!
d. Our peers, culture – the people we look up to and hang around with pressure us more than we know
1) All they have to do is ignore you and you crumble
2) They change their hair style, and you follow an hour later
3) They make fun of anything godly or pure, and you fall right in line and mock along with them!
4) It is very hard to go against your chosen culture and peer-group of friends
5. Maybe you are tempted:
a. To quit your marriage
b. Your job – constantly trying to quit
c. Your Gospel ministry
d. Tempted to go back to the old life – to drinking, drugging
e. Tempted to click back on that wicked website
6. How are you going to NOT go through with it, when you have never been able before?
III. Message - So, How Does a Christian Battle Against Such Power?
A. What GOD Says About Temptation…
According to 1Corinthians 10:13 every born again
child of God CAN escape temptation’s clutches, grip, its consequences
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.
According to 2Peter 2:9, God know perfectly well
how to get you OUT of temptation’s grip
The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished.
According to Jude 1:24, God can keep you from
falling into sin and from giving into ANY temptation!
Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy
One more… We ARE more than conquerors through
(Romans 8:37) Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
5. Where is the problem?
a. Many Christians just don’t really care to escape – they like bondage – they are used to it
b. Most “Christians” don’t want to be godly!
c. Most don’t need God to help them – don’t WANT His help – believe they can manage on their own
d. Too many Christians LOVE toying with temptation, and live so much like the world, that they like Lot, don’t mind being like Sodom, and don’t fear the consequences!
B. The Power That is On Our Side (1Corinthians 10:13) – here is the message
1. We know the power that is pulling us to the sins of:
d. Anger and constant arguing
2. But, What is the power that is on the Christian’s side of the pull?
3. The Faithfulness of God
a. And THAT is it!
b. That is all we need
4. God “IS” faithful – not just WAS!
5. He has Always Been Faithful in the Past
a. God’s faithfulness is what got every great man and woman of faith in history through their temptations
b. God was faithful to David
1) A young shepherd boy
2) Anointed to be king of Israel, but hunted by Saul, and often tempted to just quit, or take revenge
3) Seven long painful years had to be endured
4) Because David trusted that God was faithful, showing him a better way to act and react every time Saul attacked and tried to literally kill him!
c. He was and is faithful to His people, Israel
1) As rebellious they have usually been towards God for most of their history
2) God has kept His end of every promise
3) Deu 7:7-9 The LORD did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people: But because the LORD loved you, and because he would keep the oath which he had sworn unto your fathers, hath the LORD brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you out of the house of bondmen, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt. Know therefore that the LORD thy God, he is God, the faithful God, which keepeth covenant and mercy with them that love him and keep his commandments to a thousand generations.
d. He was even faithful to wicked Lot in Genesis 19
1) Lot was so covetous and greedy
2) Didn’t mind walking away from God, from God’s simple blessings, and from God’s people
3) Didn’t mind living amongst a city full of sodomites
4) Didn’t mind losing his family to that wicked culture
5) Yet, God intervened and showed Lot and his family grace, and told them to get out of town before judgment fell
6) He showed them a way of escape
6. He is faithful to you and me too in the present
a. Lam 3:22,23 It is of the LORD'S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.
b. You and I can trust God’s goodness and His faithfulness to His children
1) You ARE one of His children right?
2) Well, He IS good to His people! All the time!
7. He Can Get YOU through every temptation to sin
a. He won’t remove the temptation…
b. But He always makes it possible for us to walk away from the temptation
c. When you want to…
2) To have what you should not have
3) To boast and brag about yourself
4) To complain about all your troubles
5) To doubt God
6) And to doubt God’s will
d. THAT is when you can look for God’s help, and He will always be there to help you!
e. The work and power of Jesus Christ IN us, is all we need to wrestle down all the powers of hell that pull our hearts and minds away from the right way!
C. God is Faithful
1. Probably the greatest words ever penned!
2. Here is just how faithful He is… What God does for us:
3. God will never allow Satan to go too far in tempting you
a. Believe me, he knows how to tempt you and what to tempt you with
b. You and I WILL be tested beyond our abilities
c. But we will never be tempted beyond our limit to walk away from it
d. Think about that
e. God actually limits Satan’s pull on you – THANK GOD!
4. God will ALWAYS make a way for you to escape out of that temptation-trap
a. Gives us a way out of sin’s trap
1) Gen 39:7-12 And it came to pass after these things, that his master's wife cast her eyes upon Joseph; and she said, Lie with me.
2) Gen 39:8 But he refused, and said unto his master's wife, Behold, my master wotteth not what is with me in the house, and he hath committed all that he hath to my hand;
3) Gen 39:9 There is none greater in this house than I; neither hath he kept back any thing from me but thee, because thou art his wife: how then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?
4) Gen 39:10 And it came to pass, as she spake to Joseph day by day, that he hearkened not unto her, to lie by her, or to be with her.
5) Gen 39:11 And it came to pass about this time, that Joseph went into the house to do his business; and there was none of the men of the house there within.
6) Gen 39:12 And she caught him by his garment, saying, Lie with me: and he left his garment in her hand, and fled, and got him out.
b. God promises to always give you an escape hatch to escape
1) Escape the grip, bondage, dominion, and the consequences of temptation and sin
2) 2Pe 2:9 The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations [NOT JUST SINS], and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished
c. And a supernatural ability to endure
1) 2Cor 12:8-10 For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.
5. God is faithful to always enable you to go through that escape hatch – even when you feel weak and unable
a. It’s not always easy to walk or run away from a temptation
b. But you will be able to bear it – handle it
c. 2Corinthians 11:32,33 In Damascus the governor under Aretas the king kept the city of the Damascenes with a garrison, desirous to apprehend me: And through a window in a basket was I let down by the wall, and escaped his hands.
6. Gives us something better to want, with better consequences that the sin we thought we wanted!
7. God is faithful to convict you of the consequences of giving into that temptation – we forget this! If you are saved, the Holy Spirit is IN you, and you just have drowned Him out so long you can’t hear Him now, but He is THERE, telling you constantly, STOP! WAIT! DON’T SAY THAT! QUIT LOOKING!
8. God is faithful to stay with you through the temptation – cannot abandon you
a. Probably the best part of this entire message
b. He can’t abandon us to the devil’s grip – (Psalm 103:14) For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust.
c. We won’t ever stand a chance against Satan, our own nature, the culture around us, or our own heart!
d. So, He stays with us, along side us, helping us every second of every day
e. Hebrews 13:5,6 Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me.
1. We are all tempted - Even YOU (Galatians 6:1) Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.
2. Being Tempted is NOT a sin
3. But EVERY temptation has a deadly hook in it – a catch
4. We are no match for temptation – because it is usually tailored to what we already want
5. But God is able to help you defeat every temptation – He and only He can go toe to toe and head to head with temptation, and sin, and Satan, and all of hell put together!
6. But you have got to WANT to escape – want to live free
a. Do you?
b. Or has the devil wrongly convinced YOU that you are beyond God’s help
c. You are not dear friend!
B. God’s Invitation to You
1. Not everyone gets to escape sin’s grasp
a. Romans 6:23 says, "the wages of sin is death"
b. Ezekiel 18:4 says, "the soul that sinneth, it shall die."
c. James 1:15 says, "when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death."
d. Hebrews 2:3 How shall we escape [THE COMING WRATH OF GOD], if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him.
2. God has invited you to be “saved” – converted, born again
3. You can’t change by yourself
4. You need a SAVIOUR who can forgive you (YES!), and who can keep you out of even the temptation to sin, on a moment by moment basis!
5. Will you repent this morning? Humble yourself AS a sinner before God, and admit you are a mess
6. And just ASK Jesus to save you from your sin!
a. Don’t worry about getting baptized, joining a church, paying your tithes, being good, etc.
b. Just get Jesus to wash you clean
c. And get serious about living clean!