In our message series, we are learning to “Follow God’s Heart.” As we’ve looked at the life of David, we’ve seen him have great success and blessing. Yet, we’re going to see that no one is exempt from temptation’s lure.
1 Peter 5:8 (ESV) Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.
I certainly don’t want to be devoured by a lion. But that’s what the devil seeks to do to each one of us. He looks for our weak spots and throws temptations at us, hoping we take the bait. This verse tells us to be watchful, for the devil is always prowling around. How does temptation work?
James 1:14 (ESV) But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire.
Temptation is when the devil gets your attention with a temptation and your own desire responds to that temptation. If there’s nothing within you that responds to the temptation, it has no effect. But if your own desire I drawn to that temptation, it is the beginning of trouble. Martin Luther put it this way. You can’t stop a bird from flying over your head, but you can stop it from building a nest in your hair.
James 1:15 (ESV) Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.
When your desire for the temptation overcomes your resistance, then you succumb to the temptation and sin. The result of sin is always negative and of course unforgiven sin leads to eternal death. Now, what would make a person give in to temptation? Every temptation is a lie from Satan. When you believe the lie, you are on your way to giving in.
Satan uses all kinds of lies to entice people with temptation. Here are some examples:
- No one will ever find out.
- It won’t really hurt anyone.
- Everyone else is doing it and it’s not hurting them.
- I deserve this.
- I can just say sorry afterward and God will forgive me.
Today’s message is entitled “Recovering from Failure.” We’re going to see how the greatest king, King David, fell into temptation. He ended up breaking five of the ten commandments. From his example, we’re going to learn ways to resist temptation. And we’re going to learn how to recover from and not be destroyed by failure.