Keeping Ourselves Unspotted from the World (Lesson 09)
1. We learn from James 1:27 that "keeping ourselves unspotted from the world" is an important part of "pure and undefiled religion before God." 2. One key to keeping ourselves unspotted from the world is knowing how to properly face the issue mentioned in Matthew 26:41: "temptation." Discussion: I. SOME HELPFUL INSTRUCTIONS ARE GIVEN IN JAMES 1:13-15
A. To face temptation properly, we must identify the source of it. 1. It should set our minds at ease to know that God is not the source of temptation. a. (vs.13) God cannot be tempted with evil, and He does not tempt anyone. b. To prevent a possible misunderstanding, we must keep in mind that the Bible addresses 2 types of "temptation": 1) the trying of our faith (James 1:2-3) 2) an enticement to commit sin. c. This helps us understand what God did when He "tempted" Abraham (Genesis 22:1; Hebrews 11:17). d. God allows us to be tested, but He does not entice anyone to commit sin. e. Just the opposite is true (2 Peter 2:9). 2. Satan is the source of temptation. a. (Matthew 4:1) Following His baptism, Jesus was led "into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil." b. (Matthew 4:3) Satan is identified as "the tempter." c. Satan is also identified as our adversary (1 Peter 5:8). B. To face temptation properly, we must understand how it works. 1. According to vs.14, we are tempted when we are lured away by our own desires and enticed (this temptation process is illustrated by what happened to Eve in Genesis 3:1-6). 2. James shows us that the temptation process is both "universal" as well as "personal." a. The temptation process is universal in that it relates to "every man." b. The temptation process is personal in that it relates to our individual desires. C. To face temptation properly, we must stop it at this point. 1. Some helpful instructions are given in James 4:7-8a. 2. Perhaps it will help us to look at 2 men who faced similar temptations. a. Joseph resisted Satan (Genesis 39:7-12). b. David did not resist Satan (2 Samuel 11:2-4). D. To face temptation properly, we must realize that its results are deadly. 1. Desire that is allowed to conceive will result in sin. 2. The final result of sin is "death" (Isaiah 59:2). E. This information presented in James 1:13-15 will help us to face temptation properly. II. LET US EXAMINE SOME ADDITIONAL INSTRUCTIONS
A. "Prayer" will help us to face temptation properly. 1. In His model prayer Jesus taught His followers to pray: "And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil" (Matthew 6:13). 2. (Matthew 26:41) Jesus told His apostles: "Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation." 3. We need to depend upon prayer because "the flesh is weak." B. "Hiding God's Word in our hearts" will help us to face temptation properly. 1. This great principle is revealed in Psalm 119:11. 2. This great principle sustained Jesus when Satan tempted Him (Matthew 4:1-11).