Thoughts, observations, scripture and other articles relating to Christianity and the Christian life.

An Upbeat View on Temptation

Temptation happens to all of us.  Usually on a DAILY basis.  Whether it is something simple like resisting having that extra piece of chocolate, or something as difficult to combat as lust and the provocative images shown on television every minute of every day, temptation assaults us all.  I am a relative newcomer to Christianity so I have spent a large portion of my life not giving temptation a second thought and just doing what I wanted.

If you ARE being tempted, I think you should be joyful for a few reasons (most are biblical founded, some are just my personal thoughts).

  1. Temptation strengthens our faith. James 1:2-3 Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.
  2. Being aware of your own temptation means that your conscience is WORKING! Without our conscience working, temptation would merely be seen as a decision of logic and not one of ethics/maintaining holiness.
  3. Increasing temptation can mean that your standards and expectations for yourself are increasing. Increasing our standards of maintaining a sinless life is a thing to CELEBRATE!  This means we are working harder to live a God honoring life.  Just don’t fall into the trap that your decreasing sin means that you are any “more saved”.  Your salvation is assured the second you give your life to Christ.  What happens afterward is just details (not that it is meaningless, but it will not affect your salvation as long as you had a true conversion).
  4. (This is just a personal belief, but I do believe it has merit) Finding yourself more and more bombarded by temptation could mean that Satan sees you as more of a threat, making tripping you up more of a priority. From my point of view, it would not make sense for Satan to assault people who are no threat to convert souls to Christ.  Satan would probably spend that time attacking those who pose a threat to the souls he wished to keep from Christ.

Any other thoughts on this?

God bless.

-Neil

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2 responses

  1. Ricardo

    Hi, I like your view of: Being aware of your own temptation means that your conscience is WORKING!
    That I understand, but what about Oscar Wilde? He says: The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it. What do you think about that?

    Regards
    Ricardo

    December 15, 2010 at 11:42 AM

    • I would agree with him to a degree. It can subdue temptation momentarily, but in doing so we succumb to sin. Also, once we do succumb to temptation and sin, our flesh has a way of minimizing how bad the behavior actually is, increasing the likelihood that we repeat the same sin in the same circumstances in the future. Temptation is a difficult thing to endure, but that does not make it impossible. Remember with God all things are possible.

      Just my take on it.

      -Neil

      December 15, 2010 at 12:41 PM

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