Temple Baptist Church - 6-7-2009
A. Before we start, we need to realize that there is more than one use of the word “tempted” found in the Bible. The Bible scoffers scream “contradiction” because of their failure to rightly divide the Word of Truth.
1. Tempt means to “try” or to “prove.” Such was the case when Abraham was “tempted” by God concerning his sacrifice of Isaac. In 1 Peter 1:7, the Bible speaks of the preciousness of the “trial of your faith.”
2. Tempt can also mean “temptation to sin.” Such is the case in James chapter one. It is clarified by both the context in which “tempted” is used and the reference to God not being the Author of it in verse 13. God will never tempt you to sin! Satan may tempt you; the world may tempt you; your acquaintances may tempt you; your flesh will certainly tempt you; but God will not!
B. Temptation to sin is almost as old as humanity. We find both the tempter and temptation in the Garden of Eden where the first human sin was committed. Sin found it’s beginning in the heart of Lucifer and, before long, made its way into the heart of man. Satan tempted Eve and Adam sinned, so here we are!
C. Don’t be too hard on old Adam and Eve though. They lasted a lot longer in innocence than you or I would have lasted. Because of our old sinful flesh, adamic nature, and the mounting number of areas in which we are tempted today, the battle against the lust of the flesh rages.
D. If and when we do sin, we need to take full responsibility for it:
1. God didn’t make you do it!
2. The Devil didn’t make you do it!
3. People didn’t make you do it!
4. Don’t blame your circumstances for it!
5. YOU WILFULLY DID IT YOURSELF!
E. We can choose how we want to live. God has made us “free moral agents” and has given to us the privilege to choose right. He has not given to us the right to choose wrong.
1. We can control our ACTIONS but not the RESULTS.
2. We can make our own CHOICES but we cannot avoid their CONSEQUENCES.
F. It is human nature to blame either God or others for our personal choices.
1. When Adam was confronted, he blamed God for giving him Eve.
2. When Eve was confronted, she blamed the serpent.
3. When the serpent was confronted, he at least made no excuses!
G. When we learn to recognize both the COURSE and the SOURCE of sin, it will help us when temptation does come.
H. Temptation to sin can be minimized through obedience to the Holy Spirit and the Bible.
1. We can minimize sinfulness through abstaining from all appearance of evil. Abstain from all appearance of evil means that at the first inkling that something is going to turn “south,” LEAVE!
2. We can minimize sinfulness through guarding our eyes and ears. “Seeing and hearing” got Lot into a “lot” of trouble. We normally know what we will see or hear before we go to certain places.
3. We can minimize sinfulness through watching who we associate with. Walking together brings about agreement either vocally or through compromise to remain silent on certain issues.
4. We can minimize sinfulness through a close relationship with the Lord through prayer and Scripture. Prayer and Bible study will help to keep us from areas of sin. Hide God’s Word in your heart that you might not “sin against God.”
5. We can minimize sinfulness through realization of personal weakness and deceitfulness of heart. No, I cannot handle sin and neither can you. When sin begins, we feel that we are in control but subtly things begin to change. Without our recognition, sin soon becomes the MASTER while we become the SLAVE.
I. The Bible sets forth several things in these verses pertaining to temptation and sin:
1. ENTICEMENT - The Promise of Temptation To Sin – vs. 12-13 “when he is tempted”
a. Tempted can mean to be "Offered a bait" or "lured by a bait". “Every man is tempted!”
b. Tempted by evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lewdness, blasphemy, pride, and foolishness.
c. You will be tempted by self, someone, or something!
1) Tempted By Satan - Ephesians 6:16 Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.
2) Tempted By Sin - Romans 7:11 For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me.
3) Tempted By Self - James 1:14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.
d. “Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us”
2. ENTRAPMENT - The Probability of Surrender To Sin – vs. 15 “lust hath conceived”
a. Surrender can mean "drawn away" or "snared in a trap."
b. “Lust” is desire! An “inside job.”
c. God has given to us certain normal desires while the world creates abnormal ones.
d. The word is used 22x - never in a good sense!
Romans 6:12 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.
Romans 13:14 But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.
3. ENDORSEMENT – The Progression of Sin– vs. 15 “bringeth forth sin”
a. We are drawn away and enticed which is not sin to “Lust hath conceived” which means that we now are willingly committed to that particular sin. Conception is a conscious act carried out.
Romans 7:16 If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good.
b. Someone once asked, “Are you pro-choice or pro-life?” The man answered, “Both! Pro-choice is before sex and pro-life is after conception!”
Proverbs 7:22 He goeth after her straightway, as an ox goeth to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks;
4. ENSLAVEMENT – The Power Of Sin – vs. 15 “and sin, when it is finished”
a. Now the MASTER is the SLAVE!
2 Peter 2:19 While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage.
b. “Mighty oaks from little acorns grow!”
2 Timothy 2:26 And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.
c. There will be a “finishing” when sin takes over. It will bring you down and destroy you.
5. EXPENSE - The Consequence and Warning Concerning Sin – vs. 15-16 “death…do not err!”
a. The wages of sin has never changed. It is untouched by inflation or devaluation. The wages of sin is still death!
b. The deception of sin has never changed. We feel that we can sow and sow to iniquity without paying the price.
Galatians 6:7-8 Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. 8 For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.
6. EXHORTATION – The Warning Concerning Sin – vs. 16 – “do not err, my beloved brethren!”
a. We err when we fail to realize the sinful potential of our flesh.
b. We err when we fail to abstain from all appearance of sin.
c. We err when we think that we can handle our sin.
d. We err when we think that we can escape the consequences of our sin.