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When you are still a new believer, you experienced to overcome your past sins. You are convinced that God cleansed and turned you to a new creation, only by His grace. That very moment, you feel more than a conqueror and victorious in Christ.
But after weeks, months or even years, the sanctification went slow. You repeatedly struggle about temptations, and the worst thing, compromise and give in to sin.
During those times, the enemy is also putting lies in your heart for what God had promised about your new life. And you are wondering, why do we keep on battling about temptations?
It is our desire to be tempted.
“But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire.” (James 2:14 ESV)
Plainly said, it is our desire to be distracted. We cannot call a “temptation” a temptation when it cannot affect our fleshly cravings. And we can neither blame God when we are tempted nor the enemy that is always present to entice us to sin. The real problem comes when we are willing to be lured by our own desires.
The decision is in our hands whether we want to live in sin or to walk in the light. God has given us the freedom to choose life or death, and He wants us to choose life (Deuteronomy 30:19). But the temptation to give in to sin comes from us and only us.
The fleeting pleasures of sin only lead us opposite to what it has promised.
Sin promised more satisfying things, joy and pleasure that cannot be obtained by following Jesus. But believe me, it cannot. Sin is very expensive, precariously expensive. The cost is not paid in cash but in mental, emotional and spiritual pain.
Suddenly, it will hinder you from God’s good plans and bring you to spiritual death. The fleeting pleasures of sin only lead us opposite to what it has promised. And after all, you found yourself guilty because you hurt the God you promised not to disobey.
If you want to honor God, you should turn away from what the Bible calls sin. But the question is, how are you able to do that?
What causes you to sin, cut them off.
“If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than your whole body be thrown into hell.” (Matthew 5:29)
When greed, wrath, envy or pride entered to your heart, break it off. If that sexually explicit material you browse causes you to sin, bring it to an end. Do not hide those things anymore. God knows them anyway. If you seriously want to follow Jesus Christ, you should deny yourself — denying your earthly desires and follow Him.
If you still have unconfessed sins or struggles, I challenge you. Share it to someone, a godly person whom you trust, who will lovingly unveil to you the truth, so that you will be freed from the accusation and oppression of the enemy. Run and live according to what God has purposed you beforehand.
Jesus is better than what sin can offer.
Do not desire what sin can give you. It offers you a better, enjoyable, more satisfying and sweeter promises. But those are just lies and cheaper than moldy bread. Instead, pursue Jesus. In him, there is life, freedom, and hope.
You are freed to fight the good fight.
You are once lost, ashamed, chained and defeated, but Jesus came to rescue you. Now, fight the good fight of faith. Anchor yourself in His word. Do not let sin rule over you anymore. Cut them off. You are once subjected to the oppression of the enemy. But don’t play a victim anymore. Put on your armor and fight.
“Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil.” (Ephesians 6:11)
In the end, whenever you face temptations, you are not fighting it alone. Remember that even now and then, it is Jesus who conquers all our sins — our Savior who faces our every smaller or larger battle.
Jesus fought and already won the battle on the cross, and the victory is yours. All you need to do is to carry on the good fight of faith, run with perseverance and finish the race so that at the end of the day, you can say,
“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” (2 Timothy 4:7 ESV)