Overcoming temptation

Overcoming Temptation - Family Radio 316

The definition of temptation from Dictionary.com is the desire to do something, especially something wrong or unwise. Temptation is from our desires and allowing our lustful nature to control us; we become tempted to fulfill those actions. We’ve all been tempted; even Jesus was tempted, and He left us examples on how to overcome temptation. In going into the wilderness, Christ was led by the Spirit of God. He did not invite temptation. He wanted to be alone, that he might contemplate His mission and work. {SJ 43.2} One of the temptations that overcame our first parents was the temptation to indulge appetite. By this long fast Christ was to show that appetite can be brought under control. {SJ 45.1} When Satan first appeared to Christ, he looked like an angel of light. He claimed to be a messenger from Heaven. So we may resist temptation, and overcome Satan. The Lord says to us, “Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you.” James 4:7, 8. {SJ 48.5}.Just as Jesus won the victory over temptation, we can follow his example and do the same. Those who fail to realize their constant dependence upon God will be overcome by temptation (Messages to young people (Chap 40.) The only way to gain victory over temptation is to depend on God. Our strength alone is not enough. Reading the bible and prayer is the sure way to win against temptation. Words cannot describe the peace and joy possessed by him who takes God at His word. Trials do not disturb him, slights do not vex him. Self is crucified. Day by day his duties may become more taxing, his temptations stronger, his trials more severe; but he does not falter; for he receives strength equal to his need. —The Youth’s Instructor, June 26, 1902. {MYP 98.2}. 

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When we wake up in the morning and have devotion, we can ask God to give us strength. We can also ask Him for wisdom and spirit of discernment to deal with the challenges and activities for that day. Take it day by day and don’t worry about tomorrow. Beware how you neglect secret prayer and a study of God’s word. These are your weapons against him who is striving to hinder your progress heavenward. The first neglect of prayer and Bible study makes easier the second neglect. The first resistance to the spirit’s pleading prepares the way for the second resistance. Thus, the heart is hardened, and the conscience seared. MYP96.2. On the other hand, every resistance of temptation makes resistance more easy. Every denial of self makes self-denial easier. Every victory gained prepares the way for a fresh victory. Each resistance of temptation, each self-denial, each triumph over sin, is a seed sown unto eternal life. Every unselfish action gives new strength to spirituality. No one can try to be like Christ without growing more noble and more true. {MYP 96.3} . Whatever you are tempted by, even if it seems like you can never stop, I do have good news for you that you can stop!

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Have you ever fell into temptation, and you feel ashamed to pray, or embarrassed to even talk to God? Well, you are not alone! And when you feel that way, pray anyways and rest assure that God is listening, and He cares. When you make a failure, when you are betrayed into sin, do not feel that you cannot pray, that you are not worthy to come before the Lord. “My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.” With outstretched arms He waits to welcome the prodigal. Go to Him, and tell Him about your mistakes and failures. Ask Him to strengthen you for fresh endeavor. He will never disappoint you, never abuse your confidence. {MYP 97}. We’ve all been tempted, don’t be discouraged when you are and don’t feel like you are the only one. Ask for support, read the bible, and pray. If you pray once a day and are still fighting the same temptations, then pray twice a day, if you are still struggling, pray three times a day (message to self). Beware of desperate steps; the darkest day, wait but tomorrow, will have passed away.” “In quietness and in confidence shall be your strength.” Christ knows the strength of your temptations and the strength of your power to resist. His hand is always stretched out in pitying tenderness to every suffering child. To the tempted, discouraged one he says, Child for whom I suffered and died, cannot you trust Me? “As thy days, so shall thy strength be.” {MYP )

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Words of encouragement: 

Trial will come to you. Thus the Lord polishes the roughness from your character. Do not murmur. You make the trial harder by repining. Honor God by cheerful submission. Patiently endure the pressure. Even though a wrong is done you, keep the love of God in the heart. “Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile. Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it. The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and His ears are open unto their cry.” {MYP 97.2}

Have you ever watched a hawk in pursuit of a timid dove? Instinct has taught the dove that in order for the hawk to seize his prey, he must gain a loftier flight than his victim. So she rises higher and still higher in the blue dome of heaven, ever pursued by the hawk, which is seeking to obtain the advantage. But in vain. The dove is safe as long as she allows nothing to stop her I n her flight, or draw her earthward; but let her once falter, and take a lower flight, and her watchful enemy will swoop down upon his victim. Again and again have we watched this scene with almost breathless interest, all our sympathies with the little dove. How sad we should have felt to see it fall a victim to the cruel hawk! {MYP 103.2}

Faith will increase if, when brought in conflict with doubts and obstacles, it overcomes them. True sanctification is progressive. If you are growing in grace and the knowledge of Jesus Christ, you will improve every privilege and opportunity to gain more knowledge of the life and character of Christ. {MYP 121.2}

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