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Temptation Steps to Solution

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Walking Christian on Temptation  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  49:17
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Barry Johnson looks at the key scriptures that move toward solutions on Temptation.

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IV. STEPS TO SOLUTION

A. Key Verse to Memorize

“No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.”
()
1 Corinthians 10:13 ESV
13 No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

B. Key Passage to Read and Reread

Romans chapter 6
See Yourself Dead to Sinful Desires
Because you are a believer, you are dead to the bondage of sin. v. 2
Because you are a believer, you are dead to the bondage of sin. v. 2
v. 2
v. 2
Because you are “baptized into Christ,” you picture your old pattern of sin as dead and buried and see your new power over sin. v. 3
Because you are “baptized into Christ,” you picture your old pattern of sin as dead and buried and see your new power over sin. v. 3
v. 3
v. 3
Because you are “buried with Christ,” your old way of life is buried. v. 4
Because you are “buried with Christ,” your old way of life is buried. v. 4
v. 4
v. 4
Because you are “raised with Christ,” you have resurrection power over sin. v. 4
v. 4
v. 4
Because you are “united with Christ in His death,” you are dead to the power of sin’s desire. v. 5
Because you are “united with Christ in His death,” you are dead to the power of sin’s desire. v. 5
v. 5
v. 5
Because you are “united with Christ in His resurrection,” you have supernatural power over sin. v. 5
v. 5
v. 5
Because your sin nature was “crucified with Christ,” your natural bent to sin is crucified. v. 6
Because your sin nature was “crucified with Christ,” your natural bent to sin is crucified. v. 6
v. 6
v. 6
Because all who have died are free from sin, you are no longer a slave to sin. v. 7
v. 7
v. 7
Because you “died with Christ,” you died to sin’s power. v. 8
Because you “died with Christ,” you died to sin’s power. v. 8
v. 8
v. 8
Because you know that death has no mastery over Christ, you are not to be mastered by the fear of death. v. 9
v. 9
v. 9
Because you know that Christ lives for God, you are to live for God. v. 10
Because you know that Christ lives for God, you are to live for God. v. 10
v. 10
v. 10
Because you count yourself “dead to sin,” you deem yourself dead to your old way of life. v. 11
v. 11
v. 11
Because you have been “brought from death to life,” your body is an instrument for living in a way that is right. v. 13
Because you have been “brought from death to life,” your body is an instrument for living in a way that is right. v. 13

C. The Freedom Formula

v. 13
v. 13

Formula for Self-Control

A New Purpose + A New Priority + A New Plan = Transformed Life

Choose to reflect the character of Christ.
“For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son.” ()
Romans 8:29 ESV
29 For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.
Choose to exchange your old habit for a new habit.
“Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” ()
Romans 12:2 ESV
2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
Choose to rely on Christ’s strength, not your own strength.
“I can do everything through him who gives me strength.” ()
Philippians 4:13 ESV
13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
Choose to appropriate God’s Gift of self-control.
“Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed.” ()
1 Peter 1:13 ESV
13 Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.

Illustrations: How to Use the Formula

Hooked on Hunger

• A New Purpose:
I want to reflect self-control through my eating and my appearance.
• A New Priority:
I will replace my overeating with healthy eating habits.
• A New Plan:
I will rely on Christ’s strength, not mine …
— to plan and shop for healthy foods
— to remove any tempting foods from my home
— to eat small portions of healthy food
— to refuse fattening foods
— to eat healthy snacks
— to drink plenty of fluids
— to avoid tempting situations and opportunities
— to get involved in enjoyable projects when tempted (exercise, hobbies, reading, etc.)
— to be accountable to a friend each week
— to memorize and claim pertinent Scriptures
“Whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” ()
1 Corinthians 10:31 ESV
31 So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.

Pulled by Pornography

• A New Purpose:
I want to reflect the character of Christ through what I choose to see and read.
• A New Priority:
I will replace my old lust for pornography with a new love for purity.
• A New Plan:
I will rely on Christ’s strength, not mine …
— to have a zero tolerance for stimulating materials
— to share with a friend weekly concerning my pornography habits
— to develop a strategy for Internet use by either getting rid of my computer, using it only under the password supervision of my wife or roommate or by installing accountability software on my computer (for example, www.covenanteyes.com)
— to be extreme in purging tempting materials from my routine
— to pursue regular healthy intimacy with my wife
— to develop strong, open, same-sex friendships
— to establish an accountability partner whom I can call in the moment of temptation
— to fill my mind and heart with Scriptures about mental and sexual purity

D. Resisting Temptation

Running from temptation is not always the answer. You may escape a snare that is stalking the streets only to fall for the bait that is hidden in your own backyard. God’s way of escape is not always agonizing avoidance, but the more reliable, ready resistance. In your struggle with Satan’s tailor-made temptations, learn to stand by leaning on the Lord. His strength is sufficient for your success!
“In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.”
()
Hebrews 12:4 ESV
4 In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.
Recognize the source.
Realize that Satan is the author of tempting thoughts.
Remember Satan’s purpose is to destroy your character.
Refuse to be snared by Satan.
Recall that Satan is a defeated foe.
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” ()
Ephesians 6:12 ESV
12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.
Expect to win the war.
Expect to give your total commitment.
Expect many battles.
Expect to win even if you lose some minor battles.
Expect Christ to win the war for you.
“In all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.” ()
Romans 8:37 ESV
37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
Search your heart.
Do you know that temptation is revealing your unmet need?
Do you know the unmet needs to which you are vulnerable (the need for love, for significance and for security)?
Do you know that seeking to meet the need yourself is sin?
Do you know whether you sincerely want to be delivered from this sin?
Do you know that you are powerless to overcome sin in your own strength?
Do you know that God will meet your need in His time?
“Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.” ()
1 Peter 5:6 ESV
6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you,
Imagine the consequences.
Think about the loss of your reputation.
Think about the guilt and shame you would experience.
Think about the loss of peace and a clear conscience.
Think about the pain you may cause others.
Think about the tragic consequences suffered by those who yielded to temptation in Scripture:
— Lot’s wife was turned to salt. (Read .)
— Samson lost his sight and strength. (Read Judges chapter 16.)
— David grieved over his divided family. (Read .)
“Because of your wrath there is no health in my body; my bones have no soundness because of my sin.” ()
Psalm 38:3 ESV
3 There is no soundness in my flesh because of your indignation; there is no health in my bones because of my sin.
Sense God’s presence.
God is with you every moment.
God knows your needs and desires.
God knows your every thought.
God knows how to help you control your thoughts.
“Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.” ()
Hebrews 4:13 ESV
13 And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account.
Transform your thoughts with truth.
See your temptation as a test of loyalty.
State the spiritual truth that sin has no power over you.
Spend regular time praying for Christ’s strength.
Seek God’s will and way through reading His Word.
Select specific Scriptures to memorize that apply to your area of temptation.
— temptation to talk too much
“When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise.” ()
Proverbs 10:19 ESV
19 When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent.
— temptation to be too critical
“Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” ()
Ephesians 4:29 ESV
29 Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.
— temptation to go where you should not go
“Do not swerve to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil.” ()
Proverbs 4:27 ESV
27 Do not swerve to the right or to the left; turn your foot away from evil.
— temptation to be sexually impure
“Can a man walk on hot coals without his feet being scorched? So is he who sleeps with another man’s wife; no one who touches her will go unpunished.” ()
Proverbs 6:28–29 ESV
28 Or can one walk on hot coals and his feet not be scorched? 29 So is he who goes in to his neighbor’s wife; none who touches her will go unpunished.
— temptation to gossip
“A gossip betrays a confidence, but a trustworthy man keeps a secret.” ()
Proverbs 11:13 ESV
13 Whoever goes about slandering reveals secrets, but he who is trustworthy in spirit keeps a thing covered.
— temptation to lust after a woman
“I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a girl.” ()
Job 31:1 ESV
1 “I have made a covenant with my eyes; how then could I gaze at a virgin?
— temptation to be judgmental
“Do not judge, or you too will be judged.” ()
Matthew 7:1 ESV
1 “Judge not, that you be not judged.
— temptation to be prideful
“What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you?” ()
James 4:1 ESV
1 What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you?
— temptation to be hot-tempered
“Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.” ()
James 1:19–20 ESV
19 Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; 20 for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.
“The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”
()
2 Corinthians 10:4–5 ESV
4 For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. 5 We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ,

E. The Road Back Home

As a child, did you ever run away from home and then fearfully realize that eventually you would have to go back? You were probably unaware that your parents were anxious about your safety, and any thought of punishment had long vanished.… Their only concern was to have you close and back under their loving protection.
The truth is we are all runaway children in need of the loving arms of our Father. Although you may have succumbed to temptation and find you’re now in the desert of sin and self-reproach, remember that you are still the child of a Father who does not accuse you, one who is waiting for your return. If your heart is emotionally hungry … if your soul is spiritually famished … run home to God, run home. Even if you are a long way off, He is compassionately looking for you and waiting with open arms.
“So he got up and went to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.”
()
Luke 15:20 ESV
20 And he arose and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him.

The Road Back Home

Isaiah chapter 30
Isaiah chapter 30 pictures God’s relationship with His Hebrew children. They had been rebellious, deceitful and disobedient. “These are rebellious people, deceitful children, children unwilling to listen to the Lord’s instruction” (). In spite of their rebellion, God reveals His compassion and His provision for their way back home. (Read .)
Repent
“This is what the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One of Israel, says: ‘In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength, but you would have none of it.’ ” ()
Repentance involves genuine grief over your sin—not just sorrow for the consequences. Repentance also requires total honesty before God, acknowledging your responsibility and turning from temptation.
Prayer:
“Lord, I hate the fact that I have sinned, yet I alone am responsible and am willing to turn from temptation and trust in You.”
Rest
“The Lord longs to be gracious to you; he rises to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!” ()
Accept God’s grace toward you as He offers His forgiveness. Rest in His compassion. Don’t run ahead of the Lord … just wait to know His will.
Prayer:
“Lord, instead of doing what I want, I will rest and wait to know Your will.”
Return
“O people of Zion, who live in Jerusalem, you will weep no more. How gracious he will be when you cry for help! As soon as he hears, he will answer you.” ()
Cry out for help! As soon as God hears you, He will answer you. Although you have suffered, your pain will be eased as you allow His grace to comfort your heart.
Prayer:
“Lord, I turn to You for help, and I thank You for hearing and answering my call.”
Receive
“Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, ‘This is the way; walk in it.’ ” ()
Once you return to God, you must learn His path for your life. As you pray and spend time in His Word, you will hear His voice telling you the way you must go. This way includes making restitution and accepting discipline.
Prayer:
“Lord, I am ready to receive Your road map and to walk on the road that you choose for me.”
Recover
“Then you will defile your idols overlaid with silver and your images covered with gold; you will throw them away like a menstrual cloth and say to them, ‘Away with you!’ ” ()
As you yield yourself to God’s power, sin’s power will lose its hold on you. You will no longer desire to sin nor will you be in bondage to that which has controlled your mind, will and emotions.
Prayer:
“Lord, I am getting rid of everything that has had control over me so that You can be in control of my life.”
Rejoice
“He will also send you rain for the seed you sow in the ground, and the food that comes from the land will be rich and plentiful. In that day your cattle will graze in broad meadows. The oxen and donkeys that work the soil will eat fodder and mash, spread out with fork and shovel.… Streams of water will flow on every high mountain and every lofty hill. The moon will shine like the sun, and the sunlight will be seven times brighter, like the light of seven full days, when the Lord binds up the bruises of his people and heals the wounds he inflicted.” ()
God will always bring blessing to the prodigal heart that returns home. Your life will be richer, and the sun will shine brighter as you walk in communion with the Father of Compassion.
Prayer:
“Lord, thank You for healing my heart and promising to accomplish Your purpose for me.”
Sin is a declaration of independence from God. But when we choose sin, we find ourselves in slavery to sin. We abolish slavery when we believe God’s Word that the Christian is “dead to sin”—sin’s power. Abolish slavery with a declaration of independence from sin, and experience your freedom in Christ.
—June Hunt
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