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Contemptable Temptation

Let's look at the lesson we should all pay attention to in the Bible, the flight of the Israelites from Egypt. Was their escape through the Red Sea merely an exploit by God or was there some other signifigance to this act?

1 Cor. 10:1-2; Paul says that our forefathers were all under and protected by the cloud (God's presence) that went before them, and everyone of them passed safely through the Red Sea. Exod. 23:21, 14:22,29; says each one of them allowed themselves to be baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea. This baptism is very signifigant because it now meant they were obligated to the law, to Moses, to the covenant. They were consecrated and set apart to the service of God.

Today our own baptism in water obligates us to our covenant with Christ. This submerssion and emerssion symbolizes our consecration from death into eternal life. It is our resurrection from sin and death.

During their journey, God provided them all with the same spiritual food and water which came from the Rock, a foreshadowing of Christ. Today we eat the same spiritual food which comes from the Word of God. 1 Cor. 10:5,6 says that when those who fell away from the truth by lusting after their carnal desires perished. This still holds true today. Once we take hold of the truth, we are then held accountable to keep the truth and never tempt God by doubting Him. Once He makes a promise He is obligated to keep it and so are we!

To doubt and fear is in itself a sin. Why? It's a lack of faith. Rom. 14:23 says that anything not done in faith is a sin. That's a pretty steep accusation. What do you doubt and fear in your life?

These Israelites began to fall away and perish because of all the complaining and doubts they had. Even though God had just brought them through a sea, it still wasn't enough to get their trust in God. This consequently led to their demise, their spiritual death which seperated them from God. God is holy and righteous and therefore He cannot fellowship with ungodly behavior. (1 Cor. 10:10,11)

When we fall away from the nourishment in the Word, we too become malnutritioned and face temptation and the contempt of sinning. This is why Paul warns us that no man should be fooled into thinking that he is above being tempted, even when you are strong in the Word. It's just human nature to be tempted by sin. This is not a sin in itself, it's only a sin when we give into the temptation. As a Christian the best defense to this is to know ahead of time how it will be handled.

Adam and Eve established man's sinful nature and as a result we all have it. (Gen. 4) God spoke to Cain after his irreverential offering. Imagine, having God Himself speak to you about your behavior and you act like a spoiled child and tell Him to "talk to the hand"!!! This is disobedience in the biggest way. Cain disregarded God's worthiness by giving Him only what he felt like giving Him and not offering Him the best of what he had. We are selfish like that today in giving God what is left over. But since God is ruler over all, He demands that we give Him our firstfruits, the best of us, the best of whatever we have, it all belongs to Him. We wouldn't have any of it it weren't for Him anyway. But we are a selfish breed of people.

Abel on the other hand honored God with his firstfruits. He made atonement for his sins by giving God the best with a right heart. God doesn't care about the amount, he looks at the motive in which we give, He looks at our hearts. God was pleased with Abel's offering, but Cain's on the other hand was an insult to Him. God came down and told him face to face that he had a choice to either do good or to give into the sin that would always be crouching at the door. God knew that after Adam and Eve's temptation, we would all be facing the same temptations but we have a choice to either open the door and let it in, or keep it locked and walk away. Temptation must be mastered.

God said He would give us the strength to master it if we so choose. He will give us the strength to make the right decision because He promises to never leave us nor foresake us. This is wonderful news, but Cain chose not to heed the good news. Just like a spoiled child, he probably sat there with his arms crossed in disrespect. And we wonder where our children get this attitude today? Cain's bad attitude was a sin of self-righteousness, pride and no regard for God's advice. Instead he deliberately turned around and murdered his brother out of his emotions. These emotions of anger, rage, and jealousy are all carnal which lead to an inevitable death. His heart was corrupted with sin, therefore commiting a contemptable act of murder. He broke the first law of "Thou Shalt Not Kill", which God later made into one of the 10 Commandments for us to follow today. As a result of his disobedience, God cursed him with spiritual and eternal death, because Cain never atoned for his sin. In other words, he reaped just what he sowed.

1 Jn. 3:12 tells us not to be like Cain who took his nature and motivation from the evil one. His motives were wicked and malicious while his brother's were righteous.

Jude 1:11 says, "Woe" to those who run riotously in the way of Cain. He abandoned himself for the sake of his own gain.

There is no way around God, we cannot continue to be stubborn and think that He won't deal with us. It's time we wake up and realize that we are "not all that and a bag of chips." We do have a choice, God gave us that freedom, but the consequences are also ours to bear. We can either resist the temptation or not. What's important is not to be fooled into thinking that we can do it on our own. No one can withstand the temptation of sin without God's help. He promises to be faithful to His Word and His compassionate nature. He is very patient with us. We can turn around at any time no matter what we've done if we confess our sins and admit that we can not do this without Him by accepting His one and only Son Jesus Christ as our intercessor. Don't let the enemy lie to you by thinking you are not worthy. The truth is, no one is worthy. That is the price that Jesus paid for when He hung on the cross and took all our sins as a ransom for our lives. He was the only One worthy because He Himself was without sin.

Once you are saved by grace, God will give you the strength and patience to bear up under the pressures of the outside world, which is carnal. However, He doesn't promise it to be an easy journey, there will be struggles and many trials, but He will equip us with the knowledge to fight it. When we say, "The devil made me do it" is only self deception. Even the devil can't make us do the wrong thing, he's not that powerful. We give him too much credit. Everything is a free will choice, don't ever assume otherwise or blame anyone or anything else for your responsibility.

Just how are we suppose to do the right thing? It's simple, we are to get rooted and grounded in God's Word. He has a whole book of instructions. Just like the Israelites who were fed on the "Rock", it's still the same "Rock" today. We are to feast on the Bread of Life, which is Christ. He is also the "Living Water". When we eat and drink this, we will never go hungry or thirsty again. We are guaranteed a place in the Lamb's Book of Life. Is your name written in it?

To merely read the Bible is not sufficient, you must understand it or it will not fulfill your hunger. God's Word must feed us spiritually so that it will create in us a new way of living. The battlefield is in our minds and our minds are what guide us and tell us what to do. As a man thinketh, so he is. What kind of thoughts are running through your head today? Consequently if we have wrong motives then we are obviously being starved to death, literally. Ask yourself if you are spiritually fed or do you still hunger for more?

Remember when Paul said that the wages of sin is death? The choice is up to you. Do you long for eternity in heaven or hell? Choose one because they are both real.

If you're not sure of your salvation, get honest with God today and ask Him to forgive your sins, even the ones you are not aware of. He knows your heart and will reveal them to you. Take Jesus as your Lord and Savior and tell Him you can't do this on your own. If this confession is from a pure heart, God will honor your request and you will soon start seeing a difference in your life. It's amazing how free you will be once you realize that you now have an eternal life in heaven and will inherit all that God has for you.

Vivian Gordon is called to be a prayer warrior. She is led to intercede for those who need healing in their lives. She is also called into the ministry of teaching God's Word and to reach out to those who are lost or have fallen away. As a child of God, she has been chosen because she was once lost but now has been found and is a new creature in Christ. She dedicates her life to Him and crucifies her flesh everyday.

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