“Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.” (Ps. 119:11)
Every Christian faces temptation. But God has not left us as helpless victims of temptation. What are some ways in which we can overcome temptation? Yesterday I gave you the first four ways to overcome temptation:
1) Expect it.
2) Identify your weaknesses.
3) Protect yourself ahead of time.
4) Don’t make provision for your flesh.
Today, I want to give you the last four ways to overcome temptation.
5) Ask God for the power to resist it.
God promises us “a way to escape” (1 Cor. 10:13). (James 4:7) says, “Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” He would not tell us to “Resist the devil” if it were not possible to do so. Through Christ, we have the power to resist his attacks. (1 John 4:4) says, “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.”
6) Flee from it.
Joseph was tempted by immorality by his employer’s wife. When she enticed him, he ran! (Gen 39:12) says, “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.” He did the right thing and ran away as quickly as he could. Usually, we fall to temptation when we think we are strong enough to stay around it. That is unwise. Run from it as quickly as possible!
7) Remind yourself of the consequences.
In the moment of temptation, we rarely ever stop and think of the consequences of giving in to the temptation. God had told Adam and Eve that if they took of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, they would die. Maybe if Eve had thought about the consequences, she would not have disobeyed. When you are tempted, stop and think, “How will this affect me? How will this affect those around me? What kind of embarrassment, shame, or guilt will this bring into my life?”
8) Learn from it.
Identify what may have brought on the temptation. Where were you, who were you with, or what circumstances may have left you open to this temptation? You may find that every time you are around a particular “friend” you are often led into the same temptation. Knowing this can help you avoid it the next time.
Temptation is powerful, but God is MORE powerful. Ask God, today, to help you identify and avoid temptation when it comes your way.