So you shall put away the evil from among you. Deuteronomy 22:21b
It is a dangerous and costly mistake not to take temptation seriously. The sad testimony of many who have succumbed to sin's enticements is that they thought they were strong enough to remain in the midst of temptation and resist it. God requires that His people remove evil from their midst (Deut. 21:21). One way to do this is to remove anything in your environment that may tempt you to sin. - Blackaby
It starts at a young age. Toddlers push the envelope. They will see just how far they can get before someone says something about their behavior.
It goes on through childhood. On through high school. College even. Learning to drive. People, all ages of drivers, push it. What all can they get away with behind the wheel. Hiding a phone in their hand while driving, when it is illegal to do so. Hard wiring a radar detector into a vehicle to avoid detection for speeding. Adding as much speed to their drive as they can, almost looking for how far they can get away with.
It's really in all areas of our lives. Read the Old Testament. Men and women pushed the limits with God throughout almost all the stories you read.
The most prevalent temptations are those that we think we can be Master over. Nobody's immune to them. The false sense of control. That "I got this" factor.
Truth is we are human, temptation is always at our doorstep. When people talk about silk chains. It's really about a temptation. Jesus was hit with before His ministry began. Before the part of the Gospel where He went into the wilderness with Satan. He had a childhood. He had adolescence. He had a young adult life. You think it only began where we picked up on the story of his life? You really think Satan left Him alone up til then?
We face things every day. Many we can walk away from. Many are only vanquished by prayer and help from others or Jesus Himself. What do you think idolatry comes from? It's roots are in temptation.
We face things every morning, every afternoon and evening. Technology isn't the problem. Even the Amish face temptation and many of those have lived a life rejecting it. Some groups of Amish have some but not a lot. I have never heard of a case, personally, whereby they ever turned down a ride in a car vs walking.
Technology isn't the problem.
Just like anything else man made isn't the problem.
The problem with all things is the condition of the heart. Sin is there. In the heart of the believer and non-believer. Sin is there. In the heart of the believer there's also the power of the Spirit to combat it. Scripture says to walk by the Spirit and you will not obey the lust of the flesh. That's in Galatians.
Psalms 119:9-11 "How can a young man keep his way pure? By keeping it according to Your word. With all my heart I have sought You; Do not let me wander from Your commandments.Your word I have treasured in my heart,That I may not sin against You."
Many have seen children who were brought up very well and everyone likely has been exposed to children who make you wonder where their parents were in their upbringing. Go to a store and you will find out of control children. What makes matters worse is a society frowning on the proper discipline of children. The result is a society like we see today. Adults still in a baby chair wanting everything without consequences.
Sorry, but everything you do from the cradle to the grave is written down. There are consequences. No good deed cancels out a bad one. The only hope is to come to Christ for Salvation and the forgiveness of sins. The wiping away of past sins and future sins. When Jesus forgives He casts them as far away as the east is from the west. He remembers them no more. Not so with unbelievers.
Now, even believers may yet face consequences for their actions. An example is a murderer getting saved likely will still pay for their crimes...yet their soul is safe with Jesus.
As God has had me write many times now, choices are what are before us. Read of Satan's temptations of Jesus and that's what was put before Him. Choices.
Joseph faced temptation and ran from the problem. Or he thought he had. There were more false accusations. Prison time. But as Scripture repeatedly says. "The Lord was with him."
Others you read, embraced temptation and it cost them dearly.
Our souls are far more important than our bodies. Many have read the phrase "Garbage in garbage out". What you feed your soul is what comes out of it.
It bears considering. What do you occupy your mind with? Worldly philosophy that doesn't come close to Biblical thinking?
Movies that, while they may 'entertain' they don't do a thing to bring you closer to God? TV shows that make a mockery of God's views on how we should live? Both that show a world celebrating sin? We laugh and eat popcorn and don't give it any thought that those silk chains are heaping up around us. Not realizing that the walk with God we are on is gradually going slower and slower. We laugh at bad jokes. People get consumed by racial hatred, which keeps them from turning to God for the answer to it. People running to drugs to escape this life because they can't handle it. Taking drugs to escape is fully taking Satan's solution to life to heart.
Now, even within the Church there's temptations. Abuse of power. There's been abuse of relationships. Trying to recreate things that were only necessary at the beginning of the Church age that do not exist now. Redefining 'what God meant when He said...'. No, God DID mean exactly what He meant when He said anything in the Bible. Yes, as Jesus said, we would do greater things than He, after He ascended to Heaven, but it doesn't mean to create things in His name that He's not a part of.
Temptation will be with the Believer until either they are called home to Jesus or the Rapture takes place.
The real problem for Believers is to stop and consider how deep they really are. Because they are in deep! Why do I say that? Look at the state of the professing Church. Where is this Church that is to be so powerful that the gates of Hell shall not stand before it?
Where is the Church in taking care of others? Where is the Church in regards to teaching new generations what it means to be a Christian? Where is the Church when atrocities that happen outside the Church are happening within the Church?
Where is thd true Church when homosexuality is accepted as ok and even believed to not be a disqualifier to be a Pastor? Or that it's acceptable to have women Pastors? Elder, Pastor, teacher in the original language of the Bible is MALE.
If the Church today was as powerful as it should be then the things happening in the world today wouldn't be.
Is it any wonder Jesus asked the incredible question of would He even find the faith when He returns?
If the professing Church was where it should be, WHY would He ask that question?
Temptation. It cripples, it destroys. It ruins lives. Why is the pornography industry so rampant? Temptation.
Why is gambling so rampant? Temptation.
No need to look at such larger things. That guy who just cut you off on the highway. You got angry. Temptation came and you accepted it and gave in to it. That fast, that quick.
There are forms of righteousness anger. That's for another day to write on I am sure. Today God wants us to realize just what is happening to us and why. Sin kills everyone. Where you go when you die is dependent upon you. Rejection of Jesus leads to Hell. Recieving His free gift of Salvation leads to Heaven with Him.
Be careful to guard your mind. Scripture speaks on that too. Philippians 4:7 "And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." That protection is found with a life focused on Jesus.