Saturday, March 23, 2013

The Devil Made Me Do It

Sin and temptation?!? I don't think God said that anyway, how about you?
Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one.  ~James 1:13

That’s a good thing to remember... when we are tempted to do evil, it is not God who is tempting us. God does not and will not tempt anyone because that would be sin. It’s a good thing to remember because when we give in to temptation and commit sin, we always like to have someone we can blame for it all instead of taking responsibility. I like how Pastor pointed out this historic “blame game” has been going on since the Garden of Eden. I like that he pointed it out because it did a great job of bringing to light a part of our nature we like to ignore or hide altogether...

The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?  ~Jeremiah 17:9

The answer to that question is God! God knows our hearts, He knows our nature, He knows everything there is to know about us because... He is God. The Lord has been dealing with the blame shifting and lack of responsibility for sin since time began. This is what sin does; it corrupts everything it comes into contact with and it corrupts completely. There are none of us who have not had their entire being corrupted by its filthy influence. When we do sin we immediately begin to look for someone or something in which to blame the sin which is so manifestly ours.

But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.  ~James 1:14,15

So many good things have come from this sermons series from the book of James already and we are only in the first chapter. Pastor gave us eight practical things we can do, as part of our ongoing warfare with sin in our lives. They were:

  1. Turn to Christ!
  2. Take personal responsibility for sin and stop blame shifting – repent.
  3. Meditate and memorize God’s Word.
  4. Remember where sin leads to; in other words, begin with the end in mind.
  5. Avoid temptation danger zones.
  6. Fight temptation at its source be fleeing.
  7. Oppose temptation with God’s Word.
  8. Pursue godly accountability.

Perhaps the most helpful thing is to at least understand the working of your own heart. Saturate yourself with the Word of God and what it says about who you are as a human being corrupted by a sinful nature. Remember what Jeremiah said about your heart’s own deceitfulness. The truth is we lie to ourselves and have become very good at selling ourselves the idea our own sin is not really our fault. James had one more thing to say about this...

Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers.  ~James 1:16

No comments:

Post a Comment