Being on a broken planet means you will never outgrow temptation. But it’s important to remember that it’s not a sin to be tempted. It’s a sin to give in to temptations. You’re not a bad Christian because you have persistent temptations in your life. You’re human!
You’re not responsible for the thoughts Satan puts in your mind from a thousand different stimuli. But you are responsible for what you do with them. You can choose not to dwell on a thought. You change your mind! You choose to think of something different. Then, you have not sinned because you didn’t act on your temptation.
Martin Luther said, “You can’t keep the birds from flying over your head, but you can keep them from making a nest in your hair.” If you have a bad thought, don’t be intimidated by it. Don’t beat yourself up. That’s what Satan wants you to do, because the more you get down on yourself, the more he can manipulate those negative emotions and lead you to sin. A thought is only a temptation. It’s your choice whether it turns into a sin.
You’re going to be tempted the rest of your life. Even the oldest, most mature Christian in the world is still tempted. The mature Christian knows that the closer you get to God, the more Satan will throw at you, hoping something will stick. But the closer you get to God, the better prepared you are to face whatever Satan throws at you and to resist him.
Don’t be intimidated by Satan. As a Christian, you’ve got the Holy Spirit’s power in you. You’ve got God’s Word to give you truth. You’ve got Jesus to cry out to. You’ve got everything you need to overcome your temptations!
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Every morning, we awake to a spiritual war against temptation. But the great news is God provides powerful defenses so we can fight and win this critical battle. Pastor Rick wants to help you defend against Satan’s tactics with his dynamic Bible study called, The Invisible War: Winning the Battle of Temptation. This 7-session video* plus workbook study will equip you to win the battle between good and evil! Request your study today as thanks for your gift below to help take the life-changing Word of God to people around the world through Daily Hope. Thank you! *Video available in DVD or streaming formats