This is the last part of this series. I want to thank you for following me up on this teaching. The first part feedbacks were great. The objective of this teaching generally is to unfold the parameters to use in identifying a trial and temptation.
I believe the clarity of the difference would go a long way to equip and prepare us to know how to treat it with the right tools and mentality. The Bible admonishes us against ignorance, which means our knowledge is imperative. The temptation is never a sin until a fall. But we can be pragmatic to know his devices to help us be on guard all the time. Satan is never at rest.
2 Cor 2:11. in order that Satan might not outwit us. For we are not unaware of his schemes.
Going through a trial is undoubtedly different from temptation. Our understanding of this we help us greatly.
The purpose of a trial is to make us better Christians while a temptation is designed to make us a worse or no Christian at all. However, the temptation could come during trials. Likewise, our faith could also be tried during temptation vice versa. A typical example was when Abraham was tempted and fell into it by bearing a child through a maid instead of his wife Sarah, having run out of patience. Gen 21:9-10
Bible made it clear that Satan was created as an angelic being, so he is limited by space and time.
He cannot be everyplace at the same time. He is created being with limited power. Thereby inform the need for a system of administration for its global influence. The fallen angels that fell with him are called demons, and they are readily at his disposal, adherent to his bidding and directives. Someone once said, if Satan personally comes to tempt you, you must be a unique person’. I think the wisdom behind the statement, is to buttress that since he is limited by space and time, he would need to send his messengers to attend to others.
The typical example was what preceded the temptation of Job when God asked Satan his whereabouts, and he answered, ‘to and fro’.
Job 1:7. The LORD said to Satan, “Where have you come from?” Satan answered the LORD, “From roaming throughout the earth, going back and forth on it.”
Just as God assigns angels, Satan also assigned demons to everybody; be it a believer or a non-believer.
He has committed into their hands, the responsibility of influencing our thoughts, beliefs, emotions, and actions.
James 1: 13. When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14 but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed.
Having said that, he relied on 3 dimensions of operations to carry out this heinous act. Just like the three dimensions of his earthly missions, which are to steal, kill and destroy.
The three highest weapons of Satan available at his disposal are; ‘the lust of the eyes‘, ‘the lust of the flesh‘ and ‘the pride of life‘. Nothing more, nothing less, nothing else. Satan doesn’t change his method because he has always been successful with it. Anytime anyone falls, is going to be in those causes and likewise, to overcome, it must be in those areas. The daily accusation of the accuser (Satan) is always on those elements. That calls for our carefulness, knowledge and sensitivity.
1 John 2:15-17. Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them. For everything in the world–the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life–comes not from the Father but from the world. The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever.
Let’s now look into them one by one.
1. THE LUST OF THE EYES
To know you are being tempted; Satan lies at the door through his demons whenever you are developing the following tendencies; envy, desperado, seduction, enticement, immorality, covetous, fornication, adultery, impatience, promiscuous, indiscipline, etc
2. THE LUST OF THE FLESH
To know you are being tempted; Satan lies at the door through his demons whenever you are developing tendencies to speak too much, gossip, develop uncontrollable sexual desire, greed, steal, kill, engage in corrupt practices, gluttony, excessive alcohol consumption, backbiting, blackmailing, carelessness, indiscipline, uncontrol anger, etc.
3. THE PRIDE OF LIFE
To know you are being tempted;Satan lies at the door through his demons whenever you are developing tendencies of the following, pride, unhealthy competition, boastful, unforgiving, puffed up, stinginess, selfishness, arrogance, hot temper, ostentatious, presumptuous, contention, strife,over-ambitious, over-zealous, ingratitude, etc.
The above are the gateways Satan uses to gain entrances into our lives. The traits mentioned above are not exhausted. Other tendencies are referred to in the Bible, and you must accustom yourself with them. That is why it is important to regularly examine ourselves and also listen to others whenever they point out something in our lives that we may not have seen or known by ourselves. A typical case of someone I love so much for tucking into advice was Moses when he was given leadership and administrative advice by his father-in-law Jethro. It would have been pride if he had refused. His obedience brought an untold relief to him. He was relieved of stress and ultimately had more time to do other things.
Exo 18:13. The next day Moses took his seat to serve as a judge for the people, and they stood around him from morning till evening. 14 When his father-in-law saw all that Moses was doing for the people, he said, “What is this you are doing for the people? Why do you alone sit as judge, while all these people stand around you from morning till evening?”
15 Moses answered him, “Because the people come to me to seek God’s will. 16 Whenever they have a dispute, it is brought to me, and I decide between the parties and inform them of God’s decrees and instructions.”
17 Moses’ father-in-law replied, “What you are doing is not good. 18 You and these people who come to you will only wear yourselves out. The work is too heavy for you; you cannot handle it alone. 19 Listen now to me and I will give you some advice, and may God be with you. You must be the people’s representative before God and bring their disputes to him. 20 Teach them his decrees and instructions, and show them the way they are to live and how they are to behave. 21 But select capable men from all the people—men who fear God, trustworthy men who hate dishonest gain—and appoint them as officials over thousands, hundreds, the fifties and tens. 22 Have them serve as judges for the people at all times, but have them bring every difficult case to you; the simple cases they can decide themselves. That will make your load lighter because they will share it with you. 23 If you do this and God so commands, you will be able to stand the strain, and all these people will go home satisfied.”
24 Moses listened to his father-in-law and did everything he said. 25 He chose capable men from all Israel and made them leaders of the people, officials over thousands, hundreds, the fifties and tens. 26 They served as judges for the people at all times. The difficult cases they brought to Moses, but the simple ones they decided themselves.
Bearing all these in mind, thankfully, every believer now has his/her own weapons which are; the Grace, the Blood of Jesus, the name of Jesus and the Word of God to subdue our arch enemy which is Satan by putting him and his cohorts where they belong-abyss.
Thank you for reading through this teachings, and I hope you must have been blessed one way or the other.
May the grace of God continue to abide in your life.
You will not fail destiny, you will not fail God.
You belong to God. You are on a winning side.
Your victory is sure!
NOTE: All Scriptures used are from NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION of the Bible unless otherwise stated.