“Blessed (happy, to be envied) is the man who is patient under trial and stands up under temptation, for when he has stood the test and been approved, he will receive [the victor’s] crown of life which God has promised to those who love Him… Do not be misled (deceived), my beloved brethren” (Jam 1:12, 16 AMP)
The greatest danger for a believer is to ‘fall into temptation’, to fail the test of true love, to become infatuated with lust for the world and to betray God and His purpose for your life. Do not ignore the danger to compromise your faith during difficult times! The devil wants you to replace love with lust. That is a spiritual demotion of destiny. Love is a champion. Like a lion, love is a leader and fears nothing. True love never fails any test to remain faithful to its lover. But lust is a loser and a coward. Lust deceives many that he is love. Lust is ‘fake love’ and can only succeed in the heart of them that betray the best. Lust fails all tests to prove its worth. Lust is destroyed in the trial. All who indulged in lust end up regretting it! Lust is a criminal that comes to you with a rose in the hand and a gun in the pocket. Do not be deceived dear brethren!
The word ‘deceive’ means to be misled, to wander, to go astray, far from truth, virtue and safety. Lust is an impostor, a wicked unmerciful leader of the blind, taking them into the pit of shame. Indulging in lust is already backsliding. Repent and come back to the Cross, to the God of the Bible! Even if you have failed the test, you are still alive, so there is hope for restoration! Do not be deceived and chose to dwell in sin! Remember Jesus Christ Crucified!
The word ‘temptation’ in Greek is a neutral word. It is not negative, the way it sounds in English and it is not positive. The word means to test, to try, to prove, to examine or to experience by a piercing pain. It is like enrolling to pass a very difficult examination. Your attitude during the exam shall determine the result. If you pass the exam, like Joseph, you shall be rewarded as a champion and leader, and you shall be given ‘the crown of life’. But if you fail the exam, like Eve, you shall suffer as a loser in life. The consequence for failure during temptation is shame, sickness and death and it affects your descendants too.
We cannot totally avoid temptation. The Lord Jesus was also tempted as a man on earth. Temptation itself is not sin, but betraying God during the process of temptation, that is sin. We are to be prepared to encounter temptations. We are even to rejoice when they come. This is because we can now practically apply all the lessons of wisdom gathered from the Word of God. Temptation comes to prove and to separate the wise from the foolish, the faithful from the rebellious or the winners from the losers.
Temptation does not come from God but from the devil. God permits temptation to visit us so that we become stronger spiritually. Our character has to be tried in the fire, our faith needs to become mature and our testimony needs to be sealed. If temptation is totally absent in your life, you are not a child of God. As parents, we pray for our children that they may not encounter ‘negative things’ or temptations. But in the absence of all temptations, they shall remain weak spiritually, without the confidence needed to be successful servants of God. As parents we need wisdom how we should pray for our children.
Temptation separates love from lust. Even the unbelievers value true love. All the wonderful poems of classical literature, the music of the masters and the art of great artists, all these are inspired from an hour of true love. Even if the love did not last, they counted themselves ‘lucky’ for tasting that that only the ‘gods’ can provide. All these for just an hour of true love…
But as believers we are offered true love that is everlasting!!! True believers are artists, and composers and musicians, creating masterpieces of encouragement and hope and grace that the world will never know!
“Lord Jesus, I bow my knees to You… You loved me first, with an everlasting love that nothing can destroy…I worship You forever…”
In Christ I declare:
I love God!
I love my husband and children!
In Jesus name