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Overcoming temptations

"Do not … unwittingly give Satan an opening."

Woman praying

Memory Verse: 2 Corinthians 2: 11 – “The focus of my letter wasn’t on punishing the offender but on getting you to take responsibility for the health of the church. So if you forgive him, I forgive him. Do not think I am carrying around a list of personal grudges. The fact is that I am joining in with your forgiveness, as Christ is with us, guiding us. After all, we don’t want to unwittingly give Satan an opening for yet more mischief—we’re not oblivious to his sly ways!”

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The Word for Today devotional by United Christian Broadcasters (UCB) says

You will always be tempted in your weakest areas. So:

1) Prepare yourself. Otherwise, you will not be ready when it comes. Where does temptation originate? In your mind! Any defeat that manifests itself in your conduct was first a battle lost in your mind. That is why Paul wrote, ‘do not … unwittingly give Satan an opening.’

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2) Brace for impact. Ask God to help you detect Satan’s advances, and buckle your seat belt in preparation for what lies ahead.

An ink-stained wall in Wartburg Castle, Germany, illustrates the point. Deep in prayer, Martin Luther suddenly became aware of the enemy’s presence.

The story goes that he picked up an inkpot and hurled it against the wall, aiming it at the devil. Luther sensed the adversary is advance and responded the best way he knew how. Sound extreme?

Maybe, but the question is do you have that kind of spiritual sensitivity?

3) Submit to God, and then serve the devil an eviction notice. If you do not, he will defeat you. ‘Submit … to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you’ (James 4:7 NASB).

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Satan wants you to do the opposite by resisting God and submitting to him. Do not fall into his trap! If you are battling temptation today, stand on this promise: ‘Our high priest is able to understand our weaknesses.

He was tempted in every way that we are, but he did not sin. Let us, then, feel very sure that we can come before God’s throne where there is grace.

There we can receive mercy and grace to help us when we need it’ (Hebrews 4:15-16 NCV). God will give you the grace needed to overcome temptation.

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