My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. James 1:2-4
We are all tempted to sin. We are always in a battle with sin. We also all have different sins and different temptations and battles we have to face. But, not all of our battles are from the Lord.
James 1:13 says Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man.
Not every trial is from the Lord. Think of Adam and Eve. Eve knew that eating from the tree of knowledge of good and evil was a sin and that she would be punished for it. But, the devil knew that too. He tempted Eve and told her how wonderful the fruit was. He told her if she ate the fruit, she would be like the gods knowing good and evil. Sadly, she gave in to the temptation. It was not God who put that trial in her path, it was the devil.
But how does this come into play with our everyday lives?
Well, here’s one of many examples. Let’s say you work as a house cleaner. One day you are working at someones home and you find a $100 bill under the dresser. Part of you says to set it on the dresser with a note for the owners to find when they come home but, another part of you (the devil) tells you to stick it in your pocket and keep on cleaning.
Or, when you’re fasting and have been starving all day and have been praying and seeking the Lord and then you come home to homemade steak and freshly baked brownies.😍 Talk about the temptation!
Or, if someone is telling some juicy gossip and you just happen to know something a little more about that situation that this gossiper doesn’t know. You may be tempted to tell all you know about that situation and add to the rumor. But, that’s not God tempting you, it’s the devil.
The devil will tempt you with anything and everything if it causes you to sin and take a tiny step backwards from God. The devil knows that the end result of sin is death and that’s what he wants for your life. He does not want us to go to heaven with God. He hates God and he hates us.
The difference between a trial from the devil and a trial from God is the end result. If the trial is intended to strengthen you, it’s from God. But, a trial from the devil will take you down a road of sin.
When you are tempted to eat that steak, spread that rumor, or steal that money, etc., dont be sad that you cannot engage in the sinful pleasure. Be happy that after enduring the temptation, your patience will grow. Be happy that your relationship with God will grow because when patience is done with its work in your life, you will be made perfect and entire. You will not desire the things of this world. You will not desire those sinful pleasures. You will desire the things of the Lord and will be kingdom minded.