I am certain you will agree with me that while we are tempted daily to engage in sin and sinful nature, all of us are not subjected to the same kinds of temptation. For some, it may be sexual sin; for another, it may be alcohol or drugs; some may even be tempted with impure and immoral thoughts; while others, it is greed and covetousness that lead to additional sin such as stealing and murder. Whatever it may be, be sure that Satan the chief instigator will tempt you at your weak point. He will also tempt you in your area of strength through the spirit of pride.
Recently, I read in the news of this Pastor of a popular church congregation in Florida who fled naked from a member’s home after a husband came home and caught him in bed with his wife. While this is a sad moment for the church and all of us as followers of Jesus Christ, it is a perfect example of how Satan buffets believers and can lure them through temptation into sin.
If while reading this, you picked up a few rocks and were about to throw them at the ones involved in the above situation, hold your rocks! Not so fast!
The church has a responsibility to God to pray for one another, even all those involved in that matter and to restore them with a spirit of meekness. Galatians 6:1 says, “Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such a one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.”
So in what ways then do we consider ourselves? How can we avoid or rather overcome temptation?
Here are 5 ways in which you can:
1.) Hide God’s word in your heart
The Psalmist David was declared to be a man according to God’s own heart, yet he was caught up in the sin of adultery with Bathsheba. No doubt he learned his lesson, and learned it the hard way. He understood the importance of God’s word not just for successful daily living but in tempting situations. One sure way he has prescribed to overcome temptation is to hide the word of God in your heart. Jesus was tempted of the Devil in the wilderness but He overcame with the word of His Father.
“Thy word have I hidden in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.” ~ Psalm 119:11
2.) Do not deliberately place yourself in a position to be tempted
Never place yourself in a position where you can be tempted and be led into sin. You may tell yourself that you are strong and that you will not have another drink, watch porn or engage in lewd and promiscuous acts. Perhaps you said to yourself you will stay away from certain people who you know are always criticizing and gossiping about the sister or brother. But remember you are not necessarily tempted by what you have already overcome, you are tempted in the weak areas of your life.
“See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise. Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.Wherefore be not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit.” ~ Ephesians 5:15-18
3.) Ask God for His strength and to show you the way that you may escape
There is nothing that anyone of us are tempted with that others have not themselves been tempted before. To what degree you may ask? God knows your strength, likewise He knows your weakness. Trust in Him to guide and strengthen you and give you the strategy of how you may overcome. He allows the test and temptation as a means of strengthening you in your weakness but if you go out there on your own thinking you have it all together and you have things under control, that is when you can expect your greatest fall from His grace.
“..he said unto me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” ~ 2 Corinthians 12:9
“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” ~ 1 Corinthians 10:13
4.) Get someone who will hold you accountable
Every person need someone in their lives to hold them accountable – someone who can mentor you, guide you, pray for you, keep you in check and to cheer you on in life. Yes, the Bible [God’s word] is your manual but you still need that ‘go to person’ when you are not sure about something or you need guidance and wisdom so you make the right choices.
“Confess your faults one to another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.” ~ James 5:16
“Getting wisdom is the wisest thing you can do! And whatever else you do, develop good judgement.” ~ Proverbs 4:7 NLT
5.) Flee from whatever is tempting you
A good way to overcome temptation is to flee from whatever is tempting you. In the book of Genesis 39 the Bible tells us of Joseph who was tempted by Potiphar’s wife. Her heart was set to do evil, asking Joseph to come to bed with her. (Genesis 39:7) But just as quickly as he was tempted as she made her advances towards him, the Bible says he fled [he ran] out of the house as fast as he could leaving his cloak in her hands.
The Apostle Paul told his young friend Timothy, “Now flee from youthful lusts [evil desires] and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.” ~ 2 Timothy 2:22
Whatever you do in life, you need God’ help! You cannot fight battles on your own. There are things that you struggle with that no one else know about but God knows. The best advice is to give everything over to God, turn to His Son Jesus Christ and if you have not yet done so, ask Him to come into your life to be your Lord and Savior and to fill your heart with His power to overcome temptation and sin.
Was this article helpful to you? What strategy have you used in your personal life? What else would you add to the list of how you may overcome temptation?