Tag Archives: Temptation

Success Secrets From Jesus – Day 5 – Boldness

BOLDNESS

Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to Him,“All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me.” Then Jesus said to him, “Away with you, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.’”
—Matthew 4:8–10

Desperate people do desperate thing! Satan was desperate to hold on to the power he knew Jesus would eventually wrestle away from him on the cross. How absurd the deal Satan presented to Jesus! He was saying to Jesus: Jesus, I will give you the very things that you created and originally possessed if you bow down to me. How about it?

Let me explain how silly this proposition is:  Imagine you are a potter who created a bunch of pots and someone tricked it away from your servants hand. Then that person says they will give you all the pots back as long as you work for them! No one is their right-mind would take that deal.

Light-bulb moment: Someone in their wrong-mind – shortsighted and greedy for gain – will always take a bad deal.

So we see that Satan was trying to see if Jesus was greedy for gain, to see if Jesus was in a hurry, to see if Jesus would yield to self-preservation rather than suffer on the cross.

To reiterate, how could the kingdoms being “offered” to Jesus really belong to him when the condition was for Jesus to worship him (Satan)? Jesus understood that it could not. So Jesus passed the test and rightfully told Satan to get lost.

Be Bold and Get Ghost

We have to boldly tell our stinking thinking to get lost if we are to be successful. Furthermore, better than telling our stinking thinking to get lost is telling whatever is filling our mind with useless thoughts to get lost. While many believers have no problems telling Satan to get lost, many people still find it difficult to extricate themselves from people and situations that take away from their lives.

Light-bulb moment: We must pass the test of boldness if we are ever to succeed in life

The Scriptures tell us that evil company corrupts good habits (1 Corinthians 10:33). Any relationship that does not lead to success is not of God; godly relationships (done God’s way) are always successful. This is because God has never failed and is not about to start now. This relationship can be someone or something. Whichever the case, we must be bold enough to get rid of it if it is ungodly!

To get ghost means to disappear something. Success requires that we get ghost those influences that should not be in our circle of influence.

Jesus had enough of Satan after 40-days encounter with Him. The question is this: What are you holding onto or who are you holding onto that you should not be entertaining? Today, be bold and get ghost of them from your life.

Check out Looking to Superman – The secret to success in life on superchampinc for more practical tips the experience of Jesus teaches us on being successful.

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SuperChamp Musing – Law keeping or Word keeping

Is your robotic obedience to the statutes in the bible not bringing the desired result you expect? The problem may very well be that you are keeping the law instead of keeping the word. Have a listen!

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Law Mongering – The deceptive path to hell on earth

Every human being has a decision to make with regards to where he/she is going to live spiritually. We have to decide whether we are going to live in the world, in the law, or in the Spirit. Those that choose to live in the world are those that have chosen not to know about God and so live a life controlled by the river of this world which flows right towards the water fall of emptiness/deep spiritual void while bruising the individual with every inanimate object contained within the river. These are the people that have not accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. For those of us that believe in Jesus Christ and have the Holy Spirit living in us, two options remain – whether to live in the law or live in the Spirit.

Lightbulb MomentTo live in the law is to know about God; to live in the Spirit is to know God  

Wait you say! I thought that I am now living in the Spirit because I have accepted the Spirit. Not true! Paul tells us that if we have the Spirit, let us also walk (live) in the Spirit (see Galatians 5:25). So there is a difference. Yes, we are given the Spirit upon believing with our hearts and confessing with our mouths (see Romans 10:9-10) but the glorious inheritance of the goodies of the kingdom of heaven which includes a life of love, joy, peace, self-control and much more are reserved for those who live in the Spirit. See, we do not miss the mark (sin) when we are walking in the Spirit for there is no sin in God; hence we only miss the mark when we are walking out of the Spirit. Note: Only Jesus was able to walk in the Spirit perfectly for He had no sin.

Lightbulb MomentThe extent to which we walk in the Spirit determines the extent to which we live heaven on earth

The snag today for too many of us is that we spend most of our time walking out of the Spirit and instead in the law. We think we are alright as long as we do not walk in the world. No! The law only condemns and brings death. We find that the incessant walking in the law results in the church body being very little different from the world – same lack of victory, same divorce rates, same lack of self-control, same fear projection and mongering! No wonder the influence of the church in many places seems to be dwindling. Part of the issue is our law-mongering which produces no tangible fruit for the world to be attracted towards!

Lightbulb MomentLaw mongering is the attempt to fulfill what is written in the perfect law of liberty (the bible) in our own strength and reasoning; our own flesh.

Law mongering causes us to apply the word of God to our situation (most of the time based on our feelings) rather than allow God to speak His word to our circumstance. What is the difference you ask? The temptation of Jesus in the wilderness illustrates the difference: Although Satan and Jesus were both quoting from the scripture (law), only the scripture (law) that was given to Jesus by the Holy Spirit (Word) brought life. Conversely, the word spoken by the devil was obviously not from the Word (Holy Spirit). Thus, we see that the Holy Spirit speaks the ‘word of the law’ that brings life, but the devil speaks the ‘word of the law’ that brings death.

Likewise, we should not apply the word of the law as we ‘think’ it applies, but should allow the Holy Spirit to apply the word of the law that will bring liberty (instead of bondage). For example, we should not decide whether we are going to discipline our children (Proverbs 22:15) or pardon their offense (Colossians 3:21) but allow the Spirit of God to tell us which one we should do. See, both actions are scriptural, but only the one the Holy Spirit directs us to do for the specific situation brings life. If we are not living in the Spirit, we choose the word of the law to apply based on emotions, history, circumstance, and upbringing and so put ourselves into bondage when we invariably get it wrong.

So what is the point of the law? The law is useful for a myriad of reasons including testing of the spirits speaking to us. It lets us prove that it is the Holy Spirit speaking to us, for the Holy Spirit will not contradict what is contained within the bible. This is why Jesus says that He did not come to abolish the law! The law makes the nature of God tangible to us and allows us to choose Him.

In summary, to have life, we must be doers of the word instead of being doers of the law. We must allow the law to speak to us through the Holy Spirit rather than speaking and acting out the law to our circumstance. We must allow the Spirit to guide us through life and so enjoy the benefits of walking in the Spirit.

Food for Thought: Walking in the law is walking in the flesh; walking in the law makes us Pharisees.

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Temptation – Oh the Forbidden Fruit

The bible says that God does not tempt anyone (see James 1:13). Yet, Jesus includes “lead us not into temptation” when teaching His disciples how to pray to God (see Matthew 6:9 – 13). So what then is Jesus saying? Is He saying that God allows us to undergo temptation…or leads us into temptation? While it is certainly implied in The Lord’s Prayer, the proof can be found in the gospel of Matthew where it states:

“Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil” – Matthew 4:1

Jesus being specifically led into the wilderness to be tempted tells us that God (the Holy Spirit) does allow us to be tempted. It sounds crazy until we take a look at what the temptation that God allows looks like.

First, the temptation did not occur till Jesus was well prepared. See, Jesus had just undergone spiritual calisthenics (fasting) and so was buff and ready to swat away any temptations the devil would levy against Him. Likewise, God does not allow us to be tempted without readying us and giving us the tools to handle the temptations that come our way. So does that then mean that God allows us to be tempted to test our spiritual maturity and our readiness to handle what He has for us? Absolutely! Jesus was led into the wilderness to be tempted to gauge His level of readiness for the ministry to which God called Him. We know this because the temptation occurred before He ever started preaching.

“From that time, Jesus began to preach and to say, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”” – Matthew 4:17

Jesus passed the test in the wilderness and so moved on to the ministry which eventually led to salvation for all humanity and His glorification.

Lightbulb MomentLight-bulb moment: Many are called but few are indeed chosen because we keep failing the test that God levies on us to see if we are ready. In the process, we miss out on the glory (honor, distinction, prosperity) that God wants to shower on us.

Thus, while all temptation comes from Satan, God allows us to be led into some temptations to test our readiness for His goodness.

Second, the temptation that God allows will not be more than we can withstand.

“No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make a way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.” – 1 Corinthians 10:13

Therefore, God makes a way out for the temptations He allows through His grace; we just need to follow it. When Jesus foiled Satan’s plan, the angels ministered to Him, and He left the wilderness. He was ready!

Temptation we allow

But now, there are those temptations into which we lead ourselves. These are not of God and these are no good for us. This is what happened in the garden! What I have always wondered is this: Why of all the places to hang-out in the garden were Adam and Eve anywhere close to the tree of the knowledge of good and evil; why were they hanging about the forbidden fruit in the first place?

Lightbulb MomentLight-bulb moment: In the story of Adam and Eve, the bible teaches us its first lesson – stay away from temptation. Thousands of years later, we are still having a hard time learning it.

Just like Adam and Eve, we tend to willingly put ourselves in situations God would not have us be a part, all the while using every reason, excuse, and rationale to justify our behavior. To illustrate this, imagine a recovering alcoholic who deliberately steps into a wine bar to get away from the rain outside. When asked why he stepped into the bar, the excuse is instant – to get away from the rain. When asked why not choose an adjacent store, again the justification is instant – the bar was the closest. All the while, Satan is laughing all the way to the bank to deposit a “slip” into the account of the man who ended up having a few too many harmless “samples” from which he ought to have stayed away.

For the man described, the act of going into the bar iteself was an act of disobedience because the man did not abstain from every appearance of evil (see 1 Thessalonians 5:22) – for the bar was his evil. He was disobedient to the word of God, and so it was not God that led him to be tempted…he led himself. In this situation, we are simply reliant on God’s mercy to pull us through.

Lightbulb MomentLight-bulb moment:  We set up a snare for ourselves when we disobey the promptings of the Holy Spirit and lead ourselves into situations where we are likely to compromise God.

In summary, we have to be prepared to swat away the devil by keeping ourselves battle ready through renewing our minds, our fasting, and our prayer.  We also have to make sure we are being obedient and so do not lead ourselves into temptation.

When we do the above, we find that what the bible says holds true:

“…he who has been born of God keeps himself, and the wicked one does not touch him” – 1 John 5:18

Food for thought: If you look too long at the apple, you will eventually take a bite.

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