Break the Power of Temptation God’s Way
Why are you tempted to do the things you do? Why after you have decided you will not engage in a particular sinful behavior do you find yourself still being strongly tempted to do so, and unfortunately losing your battle time and time again? From where does temptation get its power?
James helps to provide us with answers.
“Where do wars and fights come from among you? Do they not come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members? You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask.”
The key words here are “your desires” and “do not have.” They reveal a powerful truth about the source of temptation. Temptation occurs when we are conscious of lack. The greater our sense of “do not have” is, the greater the temptation and the more difficult it is for us to resist.
As an example, imagine a peasant girl with one child who has always struggled to feed berself and her child. They have not eaten for days because she has no money to buy food. She walks into a room and notices someone has left some food on the table. No one is around to see her. Do you think the temptation to steal some food for herself and her child would be strong? You bet. Why? Because at that point she is very conscious of lack! Her hunger pangs remind her of how long it has been since her last meal and of no promise of any meal to come.
Now, take this same girl and marry her to a prince and she will become a princess. She is now royalty and inherits the wealth of her Royal Husband. She now lacks for nothing. She lives in luxury and food is abundant. She has just had a full royal dinner when she enters a room where she sees food on a table belonging to someone else. How much power do you think the food on the table will have over her to tempt her to steal? None! Why? Because she is conscious of fullness, of supply, not lack! The more conscious she is of “fullness,” of supply and abundance regarding food, the less power food belonging to someone else will have to tempt her. Do you see this?
And this is how it is with most temptations. Replace a consciousness of lack with a consciousness of fullness and supply and temptation loses its power altogether. Possess a sense of spiritual, emotional, and physical fullness and ceaseless supply and holiness can become a way of life effortlessly.
For this reason, the enemy’s strategy is to make you conscious of lack. God’s strategy is to make you conscious of supply and of fullness through your union with Christ. Which strategy wins depends on who you choose to listen to. Pay attention to the enemy’s lies, meditate on things below, and you will see yourself like a “peasant girl” with no food to eat. Temptation wins. Set your mind on things above, focus on God’s love and grace, meditate on Jesus, and you will see yourself as “royalty,” lacking nothing. You win.
Here are a few Scriptures to get you started on your journey to fullness and victory over temptation. Use them and other promises of God, which the Holy Spirit will show you, to break the power of temptations. The key is to meditate and keep feeding on them until your mind is renewed to God’s reality, “those things that are above.”
“If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.”
Colossians 3:1-3 NKJV
“Giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light. He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.”
Colossians 1:12-14 NKJV
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.”
Ephesians 1:3-6 NKJV
“And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 4:19 NKJV
Child of God, Jesus is God’s supply house for all your needs. So, the more conscious you are of Him and of you being complete, or fully supplied, in Him, the weaker temptations will become and the more effortless your spiritual victories will be. Meditate upon your full supply in Christ. Do it this way, God’s way, and you win. Do it any other way and you lose.