Daily Bible Reading for Wednesday, January 24th:

How to Beat Temptation

Temptation of Christ - 16th Century - Simon Bening (circa 1483/1484–1561)

Temptation of Christ – 16th Century – Simon Bening (circa 1483/1484–1561)

Temptations are a part of life.

The Bible uses the word “temptations” either as “lures to sin” or “trials and tribulations”. For now I want to concentrate on the things that lure us into sinning.

Jesus taught us how to deal with temptation in short fashion:

“If your hand or foot causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away…” – Matthew 18:8

When Jesus addressed our temptations to sin in Matthew 18:7-9, he didn’t leave a lot to the imagination, and he didn’t leave a lot of wiggle room to make excuses. For Jesus to use such a strong metaphor for dealing with the temptations in our lives, he meant for us to get drastic. He meant for us to remove the things that tempt us most in our lives – and remove them in a way that can’t be undone!

Let’s think just a minute on the major sources of temptations:

  • Our workplaces
  • Our family
  • Our friends
  • Our hobbies
  • Our habits

It is relatively easy to talk about giving up a hobby or changing a habit but …

What about changing who you call your best friend?

What about quitting your job?

What about cutting off a close relative?

These sources of temptations are the ones that we usually give each other leeway on when they are causing us trouble. But …

Should I really suggest that you find another job because it is keeping you out of church too much?

What Jesus says in Matthew 18:7-9 makes me think so.

I understand that we will never have complete control over the environment we live in, but we can certainly remove a large number of opportunities to sin. Sometimes only one or two changes is all we need to remove most of the temptation from our daily routine.

Personal challenge: What can you change in your life to remove a recurring temptation that you face?

About Butch Adams

In addition to writing this blog and contributing elsewhere, I have served as elder and deacon in the various places I have worshiped. In these duties, I have concentrated my attention on the area of education - both in outreach to seekers through the Internet and inside the congregations for ongoing Bible scholarship. Comments and thoughts about referenced material in the article above are Copyright 2018 by Butch Adams . Any referenced material belongs to its owners and every attempt has been made to use it according to their wishes.

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