In the Beginning: Temptation

This is part two in a four-part series, “In the Beginning”. CLICK HERE for all sermons in this series.

We were created in the image of God, then we were introduced to temptation. 

"Now the serpent was the most cunning of all the wild animals that the Lord God had made. he said to the woman, 'Did God really say, "You can't eat from any tree in the garden?"' The woman said to the serpent, 'We may eat the fruit from the trees in the garden. But about the fruit of the tree in the middle of the garden, God said, "You must not eat it or touch it, or you will die."' 'No! You will not die,' the serpent said to the woman. 'In fact, God knows that when you eat it your eyes will be opened and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.' The woman saw that the tree was good for food and delightful to look at, and that it was desirable for obtaining wisdom. So she took some of its fruit and ate it; she also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves."

Genesis 3:1-7

Temptation Defined

PERIASMOS (Greek)- rebellion against God by which His power and justice are challenged.

"But each person is tempted when he is drawn away and enticed by his own evil desire. Then after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin, and when sin is fully grown, it gives birth to death."

James 1:14-15

5 Principles of Tempation

#1 – Temptation is not sinful or anything for which to be ashamed.

"For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who has been tempted in every way as we are, yet without sin."

Hebrews 4:15

#2 – Everyone experiences temptation.

"Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil."

Matthew 4:1

#3 – No one gets beyond temptation this side of heaven.

"After the devil had finished every temptation, he departed from him for a time."

Luke 4:13

#4 – Temptation usually comes in moments of weakness, areas of strength, or times of spiritual indifference.

"After He had fasted forty days and forty nights, He was hungry. Then the tempter approached Him and said, 'If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.'"

Matthew 4:2-3

#5 – Temptation becomes sin when we yield to it, so we need to learn to overcome temptation.

"But each person is tempted when he is drawn away and enticed by his own evil desire. Then after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin, and when sin is fully grown, it gives birth to death."

James 1:14-15

How Temptation Works

"Now the serpent was the most cunning of all the wild animals that the Lord God had made. he said to the woman, 'Did God really say, "You can't eat from any tree in the garden?"'

Genesis 3:1

Satan is crafty and deceptive, not straightforward.

APPLICATION: When we believe sin will get us where we want to be right now, we are being tempted.

Satan challenges the authority of God’s word.

– APPLICATION: When we don’t believe we need to obey God’s word unless we understand His reason behind it, we are being tempted.

Satan attacks the character of God.

APPLICATION: When we focus on the situation we are in, instead of God who is in the situation with us, we are being tempted.

Satan twists God’s word.

APPLICATION: When we focus on what God says we can’t do, instead of the freedom of what He gives us to do, we are being tempted.

Satan promises pleasure but doesn’t mention the pain.

APPLICATION: When we believe we can have it all without any of the consequences, we are being tempted.

When we want to focus on things instead of God, follow our desires instead of God’s instruction, or make more of ourselves than God, WE ARE BEING TEMPTED.

"No temptation has come upon you except what is common to humanity. But God is faithful; He will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation He will also provide a way out so that you may be able to bear it."

1 Corinthians 10:13

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