Temptation. It feels like a big word—maybe, an irrelevant word—or perhaps one you reduce to something small, like how the Easter candy calls to you from your pantry.
In reality, temptation is all around us. It’s the thing begging for our attention now that has the potential to keep us from what we want most. It’s the daily decisions and wrestling matches in our brains that can either keep us connected to God and community in our lives or lead us further and further away.
In Romans 7:15, Paul says, “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do, I do not do, but I hate what I do.” Can you relate?
One of the first steps to resisting temptation is realizing where you’re prone to it. In Luke 4, we read about the temptation of Jesus. Right after his Baptism (a spiritual high) He was led into the wilderness and was tempted for 40 days. The recorded temptations of Satan fell into three categories:
- Physical. Satan tells Jesus to turn the stone to bread to satisfy His hunger. While Jesus was physically hungry from fasting, He demonstrated that man does not “live on bread alone.” While the physical world can satisfy, your daily relationship with God will sustain.
- Positional. Next, Jesus was led up to a high place to see all the kingdoms of the world. Satan tells Him to bow down and that all power and authority would be given to Him. Jesus responded, “It is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.'” Jesus knew that not even all the positional power in the world was worth sacrificing for.
- Spiritual. In the last recorded temptation, Satan tries to use God’s word against Jesus. Often, the best lies are only a slight deviation from the truth—and this is exactly what Satan does. Jesus responds, once again, with God’s Word: Do not put the Lord your God to the test.
Where are you being tested? Where do you look around and feel like what you have is not enough? Where do you desire satisfaction or power in your flesh? What lies are you believing?
We face temptation because there is tremendous power in following Jesus. Eternities are changed when we live on mission with God, loving Him, loving people, and changing the world.
Just like Jesus, we have the ability to withhold temptation through faith and the power of God’s Word. Do you know Scripture enough to be firmly footed against the temptations of this world? Do you know who God is, what His promises are, and who He says you are?
Take time today to think about the ways you’re being tempted, then dig into God’s Word to find the truth to stand against the lies. If you want to dig into God’s Word, sign up for our daily devotional or download our Read All About It discipleship journal!
If you’d like to process or pray with a pastor, we have pastors available Monday–Friday from 9 a.m.–4 p.m. Call 847-750-5000 and ask to speak with a response pastor. You can also submit prayer requests online, and our team will lift them up!