Wednesday, April 29, 2009


Temptation is like pain. When you are enduring it, you don't think it will end. It is hard to convince yourself otherwise. As far as you are concerned, your mind tells you that there won't be an end.

But, inevitably, just as pain ends, so does temptation. But if you don't believe it will, then you will give in to temptation before it goes away. Like a headache that you take Excedrin for because you think it will go on forever, the lie that comes with temptation is the lie that the only way for temptation to end is to give in. Not true.

James 4:7, "Resist the devil, and he will flee from you."

Experience and discipline help us to know that though temptation sometimes feels continuous, it isn't. Truly resisting temptation not only keeps us from sinning, but it ends the feeling of being tempted in that moment. The Christian life isn't one long continuous battle. Instead, it is moments of fighting followed by periods of peace and contentment.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


Even when we successfully resist temptation, we are still left with the humbling reality of their own susceptibility to sin. It is here where the second battle is fought.

When faced with our own susceptibility to sin, we can either deny it and fall into pride and arrogance or we can be crushed by it and fall into despair and defeat. Both of these reactions are essentially U-turns right back into the sin we just resisted.

After resisting temptation, we must fight the second battle with a dose of gospel reality. In light of our past sin, we should not be surprised by our own susceptibility to temptation. In light of what Jesus did on the cross, we should not be surprised by God's sustaining grace.

Rather than driving us either toward pride or toward defeat, our susceptibility should simply remind us of God's goodness and our continuing dependence on Him. Post-temptation, even Jesus needed to be attended to by angels.