equate temptation with sin. Some say, "Well, if
you were tempted to commit adultery, then like
Jesus said in the Book of Matthew, you have."
Wait a minute! What did Jesus say in that
passage? "But I say unto you, that whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath
committed adultery with her already in his
heart." (Matt. 5:28) There are two key
phrases here. Jesus was not saying that being
tempted to commit adultery was a sin. It was the
lusting that was sin.
A definition for
lust is, "inordinate desire," or desiring
something that is not in line with the Word of
God. If you are married and desire someone other
than your wife, you are lusting. That in and of
itself is a sin. (1 Cor. 10:6) Also notice the
other phrase we underlined; "...in his heart."
This was not simply a passing thought that went
through the mind as a temptation. This was not
in the mind at all, it was in the heart.
That is, the spirit of the man Jesus was
speaking of; he had obviously meditated on it
until it was in his heart. If you have dwelled on something in your mind, and
perhaps even said it out of your mouth, and then it gets into your
heart, given the chance you would do it!
No, temptation can not be the same as sin. The Word of God tells us
that Jesus was completely without sin, He didn't commit sin, indeed,
He "knew no sin". (2 Cor. 5:21) Yet, in Hebrews 4:15 it says, "For
we have not an High Priest which cannot be touched with the feeling
of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we
are, yet without sin." If, as it says, Jesus was tempted like
as we are, and if temptation is sin, then Jesus must have sinned!
But you and I both know that Jesus didn't sin, it even says, "...yet
without sin." Therefore, temptation and sin are not the same. Satan
has duped some into believing this in the past, and then told them,
"Since your mere thought of it was sin, you might as well go ahead
and do it." He's a liar! As we've seen, when he put that thought,
whatever it might be, in your head, it was not then sin. You should
have immediately brought that thought captive, and cast it down and
out of your mind! (2 Cor. 10:5)
You've heard me use the term, "concordant literal" before. It means
that if you take a verse of scripture, look up every word in it,
find out what the Greek words actual meaning is, and then write it
down so that it makes sense, you will have a literal rendering from
your concordance. Look at what 1 Cor. 10:13 says it this "concordant
literal" rendering: "There has no deep sea of trial and temptation
taken hold of you but such as is natural, human, and after the
manner of men, but trustworthy God will not permit you to be tested
or enticed beyond or over your ability or empowering, but will (when
temptation comes) join to it and make an exit to get out of it that
you'll be enabled and empowered to get out from under it." Some look
at this verse and say, "See, God tempts you. It says that He'll make
a way to escape when He tempts you." NO! You've read it all wrong!
James 1:13 says that no man should say that he is tempted by God,
because God doesn't tempt. No, what 1 Corinthians 10:13 is saying is
that when satan tempts you, God will immediately join to it a way
of, not just "bearing the temptation," but a way to actually get out
from under it! He empowers you, so that you can get out from under
the power of the temptation! Praise the Lord!
Our tape offer this month is a tape that was recorded at Word of
Faith Fellowship during a recent Sunday morning service, the title
is: "Understanding Types, Figures and Temptation". You may have this
tape for a contribution of $2.00 or more to Word of Faith Ministries
Items of Interest in This Issue
Itinerary... Special Tape Offer... Spirit of Faith
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