Monday, January 18, 2021

Temptation isn't Disguised

Temptation isn't Disguised 

One evening David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of the palace. 2 Samuel 11:2 

At that hour David saw Bathsheba. We are never out of the reach of temptation. Both at home and away, we are liable to meet the allurement of evil—the morning opens with peril, and the shadows of evening find us still in jeopardy. The people who God keeps are protected, but woe to those who go into the world—or even dare to walk their own house—unarmed. Those who think themselves secure are more dangerously exposed than anyone else. The assistant of sin is self-confidence. David should have been fighting the Lord’s battles; instead, he lingered in Jerusalem and gave himself up to a luxurious rest, for he arose from his bed in the evening. Idleness and luxury are the devil’s jackals, and they find abundant prey. Harmful creatures swarm in stagnant water, and neglected soil soon yields a dense tangle of weeds and briars. Oh, for the constraining love of Jesus to keep us active and useful! When I see the king of Israel at day’s end, sluggishly leaving his couch and falling at once into temptation, let me take warning. May holy watchfulness guard my door. Is it possible that the king had gone to his housetop for quiet devotion? If so, what a caution we have to count no place, however secret, a sanctuary from sin! While our hearts are so like a tinderbox and sparks so plentiful, we must use all diligence in all places to prevent a blaze. Satan can climb housetops and enter quiet rooms—and even if we could shut out that foul fiend, our own corruptions are enough to work our ruin unless grace prevents it. Reader, beware of evening temptations. Never feel secure. The sun is down but sin is up. We need a Watchman for the night as well as a Guardian for the day. Oh, blessed Spirit, keep us from all evil this night! Amen.
- C.H. Spurgeon Morning and Evening 

We live in a time not seen since the days of Noah.  Weird way to put it, right?  Noah's day was thousands of years ago!  How can I say such a thing!  Evidence.  Plenty of evidence to prove otherwise.  It's only human pride and arrogance to say that as time has gone on that we've become more advanced.  Archeologists have found beyond unexplainable findings that prove what I am here now asserting.  

Today's world is fraught with dangers when it comes to temptations.  Not too unlike King David, we really don't need to take very many steps to find temptations, probably don't even need to leave your chair.  It could be right there in that phone you carry around. 

An idle mind is the devil's playground.  King David knew what he should have been doing.  Yet talked himself out of doing it, or listened to someone telling him he was too valuable, he should rest. He shouldn't take any unnecessary risks.  If they lost him what would become of them?

Satan is blamed for a lot, and often rightly so, but not in everything.  We have a sin nature that is just as bad as he is.  Just as deceptive, if not worse.  Once we convince ourselves of something, it takes quite a knock on the head to change our way of thinking.  Once we convince ourselves something is harmless, until proven otherwise, its harmless.  Once we believe something isn't all that, until God persists in showing us it IS all that, we won't listen to any messengers He sends.  
     Idolatry is one of the worst.  In our day and age we have so much in technology that the lines between what does and doesn't constitute idolatry are obliterated. 
We convince ourselves, much as King David had, that we're deserving of what we see coming.  Desire blows away common sense and drowns out the Spirit of God. Desire to fit in. Desire not to be left out. Desire to feel a certain way once the pleasure we think we seek happens.  It's a common understanding of sexual predators that they begin with small offenses and escalating them over time they become the worst of the worst.  The high they get from their exploits doesn't last.  
That is also the way of idolatry.  A few trinkets start a shrine.  Next comes shirts and hats. Then comes a thorough study of whatever it is in order to make yourself look like you know your stuff.  Houses get themed out to accommodate their idols. Next comes denial. Oh it's not any of that! It's not an idol!  They can't give a solid answer as to what it is, or why so much of their time, energy, effort and more importantly, money was poured into it but to them it's not an idol problem.  Really?  People willingly waste hours if not days a week on whatever has become their idol but only give their Savior, if they are indeed saved, minutes a week of their lives and withholding their offerings and tithes because of things that aren't needs.  If they aren't saved they essentially do the same.  Christians living like the world. 

Temptations aren't just a group from the past nor are they a brand name cat treat.  Temptations are everywhere.  

We are our own worst enemy.  I cry out daily for God's help in keeping my Ephesians 6 armor on.  I can't trust me! 
I am easily swayed by bling. Easy to be convinced that something isn't that baf or bad at all.  I am easily swayed to believe even the news outlets because of a deep seated desire to believe they wouldn't harm me.  Yet in who's encampment do they belong? It isn't God's.  In all of the Old Testament there are examples of why you should not trust the purported wise people of your time.  Satan is over them, using them to his ends.   That will only change during the 1,000 year reign of Christ. 

The temptation to believe anything we are told, be it from doctors, news organizations, politicians aren't just a mild pressure of a thing, it's a heavy pressure of a thing.  We are given little choice to accept or be ostracised.  Right now we live in Satan's kingdom.  It won't be the Kingdom of God again until after the Tribulation. 
We don't take things like temptations seriously enough.   We don't even try to resist when the temptation looks so desirable.  

Remember the cost to King David. 
His son was taken.  It costs someone something when we give in to temptations. Either personally or publicly it always costs.  Can be your reputation. Can be your responsibilities. Can be trust. Can be....fill in the blank.  The Bible says it's GOING to cost.  King David eventually saw his son again. But oh how painful that meeting must have been.  

Look at your life today.  How are you dealing with temptation?  Me, I am constantly bombarded.  Seconds are all it takes from ending the reading and writing that I do each morning to see it rear its ugly head.  Seconds.  Our sin nature takes no rest.  

A revival can only come when people  impacted by the conviction of the Spirit, renounce their ways and return to Godliness.  What has kept the Rapture from happening?  People still turning and revivals still happening. Yet even that is but one part.  Every man will be without excuse in the day they stand before Christ.  In as much as the possibilities being endless in the possible ways of sins in humanity, they all will be accounted for. 

We need to fight back when it comes to temptations.  Nehemiah's prayers were simple. "Help!" was it.  

Look at what you have compromised on in your life.  You and I are guilty of taking our passions for living for Jesus and have given them to things and people of this world.  Sports teams, politicians, celebrities, even family and friends are higher on the list than God is.  We know more about any of them than we do about Jesus!  I know more Christians that know more about their chosen sports teams and all their players and history than they do about their Bible. 

The time is now to turn and repent, to seek Godly living.  To renounce whatever has taken God's place in our lives. 

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