Today, I want to start to pull back the covers on some of the common ways temptation tries to deceive us.
I want to expose the truth so, we can be set free.
Tempted From the Beginning
Let’s begin to shine a light on temptation by looking at a couple of examples from the early days of the Bible. These two common temptations are straight from Genesis:
1. Made to Feel Deprived
Look at what Satan does to Eve way back in the beginning:
Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?” Genesis 3:1 NIV
The enemy commonly tries to make us feel that God is holding out on us or depriving us of something good. Our flesh usually jumps in to beat us up in this area too.
These feelings are never from God.
Remember, God blessed Adam and Eve with the entire Garden of Eden. He said, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden.” But then along comes the serpent, who points out the one thing God has forbidden [because it wasn’t good for us]. Satan directs Eve to focus on the thing she can’t have causing her to feel deprived.
Isn’t that what he often does to us too? He gets us looking at what we don’t have. This is dangerous territory. God has blessed us with so much! Once we start looking at and thinking about how we feel deprived or lacking, we are sitting ducks.
2. Doubting God and Trusting Self
Satan loves to seed our minds with doubts about God and at the same time convince us that we know best. Look at more of his sly ways with Eve:
“You won’t die!” the serpent replied to the woman. “God knows that your eyes will be opened as soon as you eat it, and you will be like God, knowing both good and evil.” Genesis 3:4-5 NLT
God had plainly told Eve not to eat from that one tree or “you will die”. In other words, this particular tree is BAD for you. The serpent contradicts God and introduces doubt into Eve’s mind.
He’s setting her up to think that she’s smarter than God.
The same often happens to us. We are led to rationalize certain behaviors, that we know God would steer us away from, by believing, “This isn’t harming me or anyone else.”
God is not a cosmic killjoy. When He tells us not to do something it is for a reason. We have to trust Him. The Creator is more intelligent than the creation.
The Light on Temptation
I’d like to be crystal clear, this article is not intended to convict or condemn anyone. I want to reassure you that His grace is sufficient for you if you’ve suffered at the hands of our enemy.
I’m talking about temptation this week because I firmly believe the best, most rewarding life is found by copying Jesus. Temptation is the tool that the devil uses to draw us off the mark. By bringing some of his tactics out into the light, I hope to destroy their usefulness and effectiveness.
Remember, the truth will set you free.
Tomorrow, I have two more examples of common temptations that I want to expose to the light.
Which of these two common temptations spoke to you today? Have you fallen for one? Leave a comment and let me know your thoughts.