Bible Verse: And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Matthew 6:13
Scripture Reading: Matthew 6:5-15
Have you watched the video The Marshmallow Test? It is research about delayed gratification and temptation. Some kids stuff the whole marshmallow immediately into their mouths even after researchers said they will get one more if they wait. Others pinched a bit and tasted it and in the end, there was nothing left on their plates. The video ends with an adorable boy who, after a long hard wait, earned his reward which instantly, together with the first marshmallow, disappeared into his little mouth.
What is temptation?
My simple definition is: unfaithfulness to the Lord of our lives. Temptation is not about some laws to keep, but about a broken relationship. Survey the Bible: Adam and Eve were tempted by the serpent to be unfaithful to God. King David peeked at Bathsheba’s bath. One of the Twelve, Judas, stole money, Ananias and Sapphira lied to the Holy Spirit. All were unfaithful.
In order to avoid temptation there must be a subject – Jesus. It is He we want to be faithful to and to please. We need THE Subject – our Abba Father in Heaven. We need to put God first.
I found myself in a very embarrassing situation many years ago at a mall. My kids were young, and my wife still had a lot of shopping to do with my mother-in-law. We were all tired and hungry. I said I would take all the shopping bags and the two kids to get a table and eat. Off the ladies went. Most of the restaurants were full, so I just took the kids straight to the first empty table I could find, not paying careful attention to where we were. It was then I noticed something weird. After settling down, I finally took note that all the waitresses wore short shorts and tight tops. “My goodness!” I grabbed the kids and ran straight out! I want to be responsible for our kids, and I absolutely do not want to hurt my wife. But, really, no one would notice if I stayed a little longer to chit-chat with the servers. But, it was not about the rules; it was about the subject. I had the subject in my mind – my wife – whom I wanted to honour.
Can you say No to anything that reduces our relationship with Jesus? Our Abba Father has done so much to get us home; whatever we are tempted by is just not worth it!
My Lord, my Jesus, my Savior, you are worthy of all praise. I need You, the Subject. Please help me to focus on glorifying you in whatever I do.
— William Hui, English Ministry Lead Pastor, Richmond Pacific Grace Church, Richmond, BC.
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