Fighting Temptation

Mark 14:38 "Watch ye and pray, lest ye enter into temptation. The spirit truly is ready, but the flesh is weak."

Temptation is linked directly to what we think upon (Heb. 11:15). Temptation has to be entered into. We can avoid temptation by avoiding thoughts and situations that generate temptation (Prov. 23:31). Since it is impossible to not think, we cannot just try to reject the negative thoughts in this world, but we must choose to think on the positive truths of God. This is where prayer comes in.

In prayer, we have our minds stayed upon God and therefore, are not receptive to thoughts that conceive temptation. Temptation or sin must be conceived (Jas. 1:14-15). In the physical realm, the easiest way to avoid an unwanted birth is to avoid conception, so it is in the spiritual world.

It is easier to avoid being tempted by being in constant communion with God, than it is to overcome temptation once it has been conceived.

Paul admonishes the Philippian believers to reflect and meditate upon eight positive principles of thinking that will lead to a victorious Christian life.

These are things that are: -

"True," that is: honorable, truthful and upright.
"Honest," that is: honorable, truthful, genuine, not characterized by deception or fraud.
"Just," that is: in accordance with what is right, or of right conduct; any circumstance, fact or deed that is right.
"Pure," free from defilement or impurity.
"Lovely," pleasing, agreeable, inspiring love or affection.
"Good report," that is: a saying or report that is positive and constructive rather than negative and destructive.
"Virtue," which is moral excellence, righteousness and goodness.
"Praise," or what is praiseworthy; expressing one's esteem of a person and his virtues.

We need to focus on the good in every area of our lives. Recognizing God's hand in even the smallest things will bring peace and keep our hearts and minds following hard after the Lord.

[ Prayer for the Day ]

Father God, I pray that You protect my five senses, the windows to my soul. That You wash away the rubbish that pollutes my heart, the heaviness of which makes me sink deeper in the pit. Father God I cover all my senses and my mind with the blood of Your Son Jesus Christ, so that by concentrating on His sacrifice I may be set free from the sting of temptation. I ask this prayer in His Name. Amen.

[ Reference Scriptures ]

Heb. 11:13-16
13 All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth. 14 People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. 15 If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. 16 Instead, they were longing for a better country - a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.

Prov. 23:30-31
30 They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine.
31 Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright.
32 At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder.
33 Thine eyes shall behold strange women, and thine heart shall utter perverse things.
34 Yea, thou shalt be as he that lieth down in the midst of the sea, or as he that lieth upon the top of a mast.
35 They have stricken me, shalt thou say, and I was not sick; they have beaten me, and I felt it not: when shall I awake? I will seek it yet again.

Jas. 1:14-15
14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.
15 Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.

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