I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.
Hiding His Word in Your Heart
Where can we turn when we are tempted by sin? What does the Bible say a believer can do? One thing is that we can store up His Word in our heart or memorize certain Bible verses to help us at the very moment we are tempted to sin. For example, if I have a close friend who has battled with pornography for many years and I suggested that he memorize Job 31:1, which says, “I have made a covenant with my eyes; how then could I gaze at a virgin?” so that if he is watching TV or is on the internet, he can recall this Bible verse to remind himself that he has made a covenant with God about the moment that he sees some picture or image that is sexually explicit, that he’ll remember this verse and immediately change the channel or close the browser on his computer.
A Way Out
God promises in His Word that there is simply no temptation that you will ever experience in life that others haven’t had to deal with, too, and He remains faithful to not allow us to be tempted beyond what we can handle. He will help us find a way out of it (1 Cor. 10:13). So someone who is battling temptation must remember that God promises a way out. That might be calling an accountability partner, walking away from a situation, or simply uttering a prayer to God to give you the strength to overcome this because God also promises that we can do all things, including overcoming temptation, but only through Christ, Who can strengthen us at exactly the moment we need it (Phil. 4:13).
Cutting Off the Source
Sometimes the best way we can avoid temptation is to avoid certain places where we are more vulnerable. For an alcoholic and his or her temptation to drink again, it’s obvious they should avoid going to the bar or to parties where alcohol will be served and bring something else to drink at social occasions like family reunions, company parties, or even wedding parties. James tells us that if we allow desires or temptations to remain in our hearts, they will eventually give birth to sin unless we nip them in the bud (James 1:15). For one man who had a pornography battle, I asked him if I could set up an internet filter and password protect it. If you cut off the head of the snake, it can’t hurt you anymore, but if you dwell on it, eventually temptation can get the better of all of us, and then it’s a short step to sin.
A Closing Prayer
Righteous Father, I need Your strength in resisting temptation. You have promised that if I submit to You, I can resist the Devil’s temptation and that he will have to flee me (James 4:7), and I thank You for Your help in striving to live a pure, holy life that is pleasing to You. In Jesus’ precious name I pray.
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