Sunday, July 5, 2015
For several posts, we've been looking at temptation. Here's our last post: after sin, we cover up and suffer consequences. We want to consider what happens when we sin because Satan is continuing to tempt us just like he did Eve.
In Genesis 3:7-24, we see how Adam and Eve covered themselves with fig leaves and hid from God’s presence. They didn’t go to God for forgiveness and restoration. Then God told them the consequences for their sin.
When you and I succumb to temptation, we try to use our own methods (like fig leaves) to make us feel better (Tweet That!) but nothing works. When I allow anger to turn into bitterness, I’m so defensive (“it’s not my fault!”) that I don’t turn to God for forgiveness and help. Therefore, I’m without the Holy Spirit’s power to resist the next temptation.
As we mentioned in the first post, the way to resist temptation is to STAND (based on “stand your ground” --Ephesians 6:13):
S: See Satan’s schemes
A: Analyze your thinking
N: Name the advantages of resisting
D: Determine the godly response
The “D” of STAND offers the solution: Determine the godly response. If we haven’t yet sinned, run away from the temptation—mentally, emotionally, and/or physically! Each time we do that, we grow stronger. But if we have given in, quickly confess our sin, claim God’s forgiveness and cleansing, and then count on His empowering for the next temptation. That's the power of I John 1:9: "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
In the final scene, the Genesis account shows God’s redemptive act (verse 21) of providing animal skins, which require the sacrifice of an animal. That refers to the future provision of Jesus being sacrificed on the cross for our sins.
You and I can take our STAND against Satan’s schemes (Tweet That!) because we know God has provided everything we need for relationship and victory.
Yes, we do have an enemy and he is even more diligent than the watchful eye of my husband’s task force members (see the first post in this series). But we can STAND strong in God’s mighty power.
(graphic by Stuart Mills at www.digitalphotos.net)