I find the power of temptation is to appeal to something you may have previously engaged in or been part of. The temptation is designed to “pull you away” from a pathway. Not so much the pathway of righteousness, but the pathway of understanding who you are in Him. The temptation is created to cause doubt, fear or condemnation to occur.
The devil is a defeated foe (John 12:31, 16:11) who lives his life as the father of lies. (John 8:44) But God who is faithful has built roadblocks. (1 Corinthians 10:13) He has given you a way out.This morning I was looking for something. Sometimes really good stuff gets put in my spam filter from time to time. Each day thousands of emails never appear to me. I receive what is called a digest or a list of “email” that is not good for me. It removes spam and virus laden emails. Emails are rated from green (Okay-just don’t think you want to see it!) down through yellow (hmmm…doubt it!) to red (Avoid at all costs! Viruses, porn, weight loss, etc..) my mail never reaches me. Kind of a 1 Corinthians 10:13 filter. But I was missing something I thought I should have received, so I went looking. WOW! How glad I am for filters.
Life is like that. You need to develop filters which are predicated on destiny as you understand it, personal choices and the word of God coupled with your relationship with Him. If you see you are constantly sick or hurt or discouraged it may be time to focus on what the answers are. In the Old Testament it was diet of lamb. (Exodus 12:1-12) In today’s New Covenant it is not any different. One must eat the whole lamb of God. (Luke 22:14-21)
Why do people fall from temptation? Sometimes it is ignorance or naivete, but bypassing our “filters” has consequences. (James 1:15) Not understanding who we are and how we are dead to sin. (Romans 6 talk about this a lot. Revelation 1:5 set us free!) Perfect love (1 John 4:18) removes fear. Condemnation no hold. (Romans 8:1 NASB Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.) Most doubt occurs for the believer in not understanding who we are. The child of a king. A king and a priest.
Very few things tempt me as I focus on the life of Christ in me. Temptation pales in comparison to the bigness of Christ. Perfect love sometimes means walking with folks who “don’t get it” as your relationship rubs off on them. A man said something to me in the last few days. His version was crude, but I realized how powerful the statement actually was in taking Jesus to the nations. My cleaned up version. “You can’t get pregnant if you don’t get close.” No one is closer than Christ to us in life. His life is in us. And unbelievers or pre-Christians will not change unless our relationship rubs off on them. (The kingdom is like this!) It requires being “close.” If you are more worried about becoming like them rather than them becoming like you, you clearly do not understand who you are in Him.
As I went through my filters I realized how little “touches me” and I reminded of the scripture (John 14:30) that the devil found no place to touch Him. Folks, that is you. Because of who you are in Him the devil has no place unless you give it to him. In Ephesians it tells us letting anger go wild the devil can gain a foothold, so we can give “over” real estate, but it does NOT change who we are. 2 Corinthians 10:5 tells us to know what thoughts move against what we know and stop them. Isolate them. Move them to where they cannot move our minds, shift our thinking.
Because of the prophetic grace on my life I often “feel” things before I see things. I understand what it is to go places and “not like it.” But while feelings are important there are feelings that are natural in their purpose and ones that are spiritual. Touch in the natural keeps me from getting burned or allows me to hold my grandchildren. In the spiritual, my “sense of touch” may warn me off or reward me with peace. BUT, an un-renewed mind displays an un-renewed understanding of spiritual touch or spiritual sight. In the natural you have the potential to be deceived by optical illusions. One can be lead to believe something that it is not. The spirit realm is like that as well. The devil can put up spiritual “illusions” to cause you to believe something that is not truth.
Recently I received a communication about a friend. It was a “bumper car” collision. They sent me something that was in exact opposition of what I had seen in the growing relationship. (Let me be clear. Sending stuff like that to people without warning is not right. All the more reason gossip is a big deal. Even if it turns out to be true. Please don’t give me the “doing it in love” part here. Gossip elevates the gossiper.) Months later I am trying to walk in a growing relationship with information that may or may not be true. God has not told me. There is not pathway to ask as of yet. I believe the best of people. (1 Corinthians 13:7) I am not going to change it. Temptation wants you to believe the worst. Why? Because it changes you! It moves you from the nature of God which is love.
Why say this? Feelings can and will get you in trouble in an un-renewed place. They will cause you to make decisions that will circumvent your destiny. Pull you aside from truth that makes you free. It is important to know Him and to know His word.
Today begin to put your spam (Spiritual Proponents Against Me) filters in place. Remove viruses that take away from who you are and eat at your being and the body of Christ. Look to Him as the author and finisher of your faith.