CHALLENGES IN LIVING
TOGETHER AS COMMUNITY
Not Into Temptation
then like this… “Lead us not into
temptation, but deliver us from
In the Gospel of Matthew,
Jesus taught us to pray the “Our Father.” The
first part refers to God, the second part refers
to us and our needs. This part of the prayer,
“lead us not into temptation…” comes immediately
after the asking for forgiveness. Jesus knows
our need to be forgiven and tendency to fall
into sin through temptation. How?
For we do not
have a high priest who is unable to
sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who
in every respect has been tempted as we are,
yet without sin. [Hebrews 4:15]
He knows our state of
sinfulness and how easy it is for us to fall.
Verse 16 of Hebrews continues:
Let us then
with confidence draw near to the throne of
grace, that we may receive mercy and find
grace to help in time of need.
God’s grace and mercy is
always there for us.
So how do we not fall
into sin through temptation?
- We need to commit to
doing the positive: love God, offer our life
to Him, seek Him in daily prayer and the
Scripture, grow in His character, and love
and serve God’s people. The key to avoiding
temptation and sin in our lives is to strive
for holiness. Strive for … holiness
without which no one will see the Lord.
[Hebrews 12:14] Holiness and sin are
opposites – we can pursue only one. We need
to pursue one daily, consistently, and
without fail. If and when we fail, we need
to repent and go back to the right path.
- Temptation itself is
not sin; but it is an opening that can lead
to sin. Let us avoid all forms of
temptations if and when we can, especially
in the areas where we are weak. Many times
we need to run away to win.
- We need to sift
through what goes in our minds, eyes and
hearts and never let our guards down. For
all that is in the world-the desires of
the flesh and the desires of the eyes and
pride in possessions-is not from the
Father but is from the world. [1 John
2:16] Our unguarded minds, eyes and hearts
connives with the enemy within, our
flesh.What should our minds be occupied
with? See Philippians 4:8.
- The way we handle
media plays a very significant role in the
way we can be tempted. Billboards,
magazines, newspapers, movies, TV shows, and
the internet are the modern ways temptations
can creep upon us. We need to know how to
protect ourselves from these, like placing
the computer in a public area.
- We need to leave our
past behind. Brothers … one thing I do:
forgetting what lies behind and straining
forward to what lies ahead…
[Philippians 3:13]. We are a new creation in
Christ. Let us leave the old man behind and
let the new man in us grow into the likeness
and image of Christ. Let us leave the sins
of our youth. Let us settle our unresolved
past – hurts, resentment, grudges and so
forth. Only those who resent and not forgive
are the ones who hurt themselves. We can be
free from our past – it’s our choice.
- 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. [1 Corinthians
- Since we have these promises, beloved,
let us cleanse ourselves from every
defilement of body and spirit, bringing
holiness to completion in the fear of God.
[2 Corinthians 7:1]
- That you are to put away, in relation to
your earlier way of life, the old man, which
has become evil by love of deceit; And be
made new in the spirit of your mind, And put
on the new man, to which God has given life,
in righteousness and a true and holy way of
living. [Ephesians 4:22-24]
- Other references: 2 Peter 3:11; 1
Thessalonians 4:7; 1 Timothy 6:9.
For personal reflection or
- What kind of temptations do I regularly
- What are my personal weaknesses? In what
ways do temptations come to me through my
Tom Caballes is the National
Senior Administrator and a National
Coordinator of the Lamb
God, a community of the Sword of
the Spirit with 7 branches located
throughout New Zealand. Tom also leads
Zealand, an outreach program for
high school, university, and
post-university aged people.
Tom and his wife Mhel and
their two daughters live in
Wellington, New Zealand.