We know the story. In the beginning God created the heavens and the Earth. On the first day, God created light. “Let there be light.”, He said and there was light. Light meaning day versus night. On the second day, God created the heavens. On the third day, He created the earth and the seas, vegetation that sprouted from the earth. The fourth day consisted of the creation of the sun and moon and stars. On the fifth day, He created the creatures in the sea and the sky. Then on the sixth day, God created land animals and humans.
God knew it was not good for Adam to be alone, so he caused him to fall into a deep sleep (anyone ever wish He’d do that to your man? Just for a bit?! 😉 ) and God took one of his ribs and made it into a woman. He presents her, gifts her to Adam and Adam is so overwhelmed with joy. I love his quote “At last..!” The first romantic moment between man and wife. Awwwww!
Everything that exists exists to bring worship of the One who created it. Adam and Eve were created by God for the glory of His name. I was created for the glory of His name.
We all know the perfection did not last. Enter the enemy. Eve allowed her contentment to be undermined by Satan. He twisted God’s words! Genesis 3:1 says “…He said to the woman, ‘Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?'” That is not what God said!
Satan caused her to doubt. Verse 4 says, “But the serpent said to the woman, ‘You surely will not die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.'” We need to always, always, always recognize that any doubt of the word of God is only from the enemy. Guys, we need to know God’s word. Remember, the enemy is sneaky! He doesn’t present himself in his bright cherry red suit with his 6′ pitchfork!! No, he is going to position himself as close to the word of God as possible without being in the word and will of God. He is going to try to trick us, twisting God’s words just enough to cause us to doubt our Creator. Side note – why on earth would Eve want to know evil?! She obviously didn’t think clearly on that one but, again, that’s what the enemy is good at doing.
Verse 6 says “so when the woman saw that the tree was good for food and that it was a delight to the eyes…”. Eve was tempted. Temptation in itself is not sin. Jesus himself spent 40 days in the desert undergoing quite a bit of temptation. He never sinned. We are not Jesus, and we are a broken and fallen people but God tells us through 1 Corinthians that we can trust Him to show us a way out of our temptations. To keep from sinning when dealing with temptation, we should first:
Pray for the strength to resist
The Bible talks about temptation being a necessary thing (having to do with God giving us free will) but also promises that God will give us a way out. Pray for His strength. Eve had direct access to God. Can you imagine if she had talked with the ultimate source of strength when she’d been tempted? Although sin separated us from God, we have an advocate that stands as a bridge in the gap. When dealing with temptation (even as preparation before the temptation even hits), go in prayer to the One who has the strength you need to resist.
Say no when confronted with what we know is wrong
To do this, you kind of have to know the difference, which comes from the Bible. Studying the Bible can be somewhat tedious if we’re not careful so read this post about how I study mine if you don’t already have a routine. I think our society has a skewed perspective of saying no. No does not have to be a negative thing. Let’s make this more a black and white thing, shall we? If we know it’s wrong then we just say no. Ok, now I’m sounding like an elementary program. Oy.
Remember the scene in Forrest Gump where the bullies are coming after Forrest and Jenny yells “Run, Forrest, run!!!”? Wise advice Jenny…
When there is something near you that’s causing you danger, do you hold on to it? Curl up to it? Hug it? No!!! If we know the word of God, we will be able to know when something comes our way that is temptation. When we recognize something as temptation (again, we have to educate ourselves on God’s word), we shouldn’t just hang out around it and think we’ll practice strength by resisting it. We definitely shouldn’t dip our toes in. We should run the opposite direction, into the open arms and will of God. Like a child recognizing danger running to the safety of a parent. This can be a practical habit of running to those we know who consistently grow closer to God and stay in relationship with Him. They’ll help us do the same. This also strengthens our ability to resist temptation. Imagine if Eve had run from the tree as soon as she thought about disobeying God’s command! Run, Eve, run!!!
In God’s greatness and goodness He had already planned a solution. Without free will, it wouldn’t be love. But God knew how fragile our free will would be. He sent His only son Christ as the final sacrifice for sin and forever beat the enemy. One day, he’ll return and make all things new and we won’t have to even consider dealing with temptation or worry about it. Until then, use these tips to grow stronger and deal with the deadly twist of temptation.
Love & Strength Friend!
Why not carry the word of God around with you to help you fight temptation? You know, like when you’re running late and seem to catch EVERY. SINGLE. red light. Sign up for these everyday life verses.