I started this new series to follow through from the studies I have done to become truly free, where I realized one thing that is definitely having a hold on us are temptations. If we can be vulnerable and honest about our temptations, we can learn how to break free from them through Jesus. My study of temptations led me to start looking at desires of the flesh (heart), mind and soul as it correlates with the temptations Jesus had to overcome. Because He overcame, we can overcome. This current study I am involved in is around our hearts. I tried to find all the scriptures around ‘’heart’’ and organize it into logical groups, which I try to summarize to you every week.
Before Christmas we looked at the first physical temptation of Jesus around bread and satisfying your hunger. We also looked at long term vs short term gratification. That led me to talk about the heart, how God knows what is going on in your heart and that you need to clean up your heart. Now my focus for the next few weeks will be on things that could be in our hearts that needs cleaning. This could be uncomfortable topics, but if you, like me, really want to go deep and wash everything that might hinder your relationship with God, you will bravely girdle yourself and walk through this with me. I promise it will become more positive later on.
One of the topics that is detailed in Scripture around the word ‘heart’ is around adultery and sexual immorality, there was so much detail in scripture on this, I could not ignore it and have to dedicate a whole session on it. I do not want to judge anyone, but I want to share the truth that I found studying scripture. I will try to limit my comments and insights and have scripture do most of the work. J
Anyone who looks at a woman and lust after her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.
The chapter of 2 Peter 2 is dedicated to false teachers and their destruction. The whole chapter is important to read, but I will highlight a few verses and will try to put context around it.
I first stumbled upon
2 Pet 2:14
Their eyes are full of adultery: their desire for sin is never satisfied; they seduce the unstable. They are accursed children with hearts trained in greed.
Which mentioned the word hearts. Then I started to wonder who the ‘’they’’ are the scripture refers to.
In verse 2 we read: In their greed these teachers will exploit you with fabricated stories
God never spared false teachers, nor angels when they sinned or the people in Noah’s time who were ungodly or the people of Sodom and Gomorrah. He hates sin and loves those who try to live a righteous life
If this is so, then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from the trials and to hold the unrighteous for punishment on the Day of Judgment. This is especially true of those who follow the corrupt desire of the flesh and despise authority.
Then the piece talks about all these ungodly people are doing. I will only highlight a few verses
Verse 19: they promise them freedom, while they themselves are slaves of depravity – for “people are slaves to whatever has mastered them.”
Through all this, it seems that if your heart is full of greed, it could lead to adultery and immorality and the judgement of God is quite severe around this. It is clear from verse 19 that this WILL steal your freedom. You are a slave of whatever has mastered you.
In 1 Cor 10 we learn the lessons from Israel’s idolatry
1 Cor 10:1-5
For I do not want you to be ignorant of the fact, brothers and sisters, that our ancestors were
all under the cloud and that they all passed through the sea.
They were all baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea.
They all ate the same spiritual food and drank the same spiritual drink
For they drank from the spiritual rock that accompanied them, and that rock was Christ.
All of them were guided by the cloud
All of them walked through the sea on dry ground
All of them were baptized as followers of Moses
All of them ate the same spiritual food
All of them drank from the same spiritual water from the rock, which was Christ
Nevertheless, God was not pleased with most of them; their bodies were scattered in the wilderness.
1 Cor 10:11-13
These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us, on whom the culmination of the ages has come. So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall! No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.
I want to comment a bit on this piece. Wow, there is so much in here.
All of us read Bible
We all pray
We all go to church
We have all seen miracles
We have all shared communion
We have all been baptized
There are still some God is NOT pleased with and are not hearing the warning, because, engage in sexual immorality OR put Christ to the test.
Worshipping idols is EVERYTHING you put above God – even your job.
We must be careful of pride, thinking we stand strong and cannot fall. We all experience the same temptations. He will help you flee from temptations, but it is your choice – do you stay or do you flee. You are reasonable, you are clever – you can decide for yourself.
As I kept on reading the next piece, I realize there is a solution that was given to us how to protect us from temptations.
1 Cor 10:14, 15
Therefore, my dear friends, flee from idolatry. I speak to sensible people; judge for yourselves what I say.
The piece goes on starting to talk about participation in the body and blood of Christ by the cup of thanksgiving and the bread in which all share.
1 Cor 10:21
You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons too; you cannot have a part in both the Lord’s table and the table of demons.
1 Cor 10:23
“I have the right to do anything,” you say – but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”- but not everything is constructive. No one should seek their own good, but the good of others.
When you partake in communion (eating and drinking from the Lord’s table) you show your commitment to Jesus. He can fill you up, but not when you drink form the demon’s cup. We are in this world not FROM it. Remember in a previous episode I talked about the Lies, the L in the World. If you take L out of the word WORLD, you get the word WORD, which is the word of God. Be careful to take the L and add it to the WORD – we need to stay pure.
Not everything is beneficial. We are free to choose, but freedom which is not respected and protected can lead to ruin.
Sometimes we are drinking from the cups of demons and eating their bread by partaking in sinful activities. Then we commit to God and start drinking from His cup and eating His bread.
That is definitely not the plan of Satan, he does not want you to stop drinking from his cup and drink from God’s cup, so he will send his demons to keep on tugging at you, to keep on presenting their cups in front of you, because you cannot eat and drink from God’s cup if you are using theirs.
Many times these temptations seem bigger than our faith. We know God has a bigger cup than the devil, so why does it feel like we are unable to resist the temptation? I think it is when we move a little bit away from the WORD, it is easy for the devil’s demons to put their cups close to our eyes. What happens if a small thing is put right in front of your eyes? Well, it can seem bigger than a thing that is bigger but a bit further away. The temptation is right in front of your eyes, it seems bigger than God that is maybe a bit further away.
Keep on soaking in God’s drink and bread – lose yourself in the word of God – carry it with you and every time a demon presents you with a temptation cup, read the word of god. It might feel strange at first but it will work.
Know that he has overcome all temptations and will help you
You will not be tempted above your strengths
God cup is bigger than their small cups. Keep your nose in the word, so that God’s cup is always bigger.
Which is not respected and protected can lead to ruin.
One of the things that can keep your heart captured is the sin of adultery, whether in the physical act or only in the thought of it.
You are a slave of whatever masters you
No one should be full of pride thinking you will not be tempted in this way
We are able to resist because Jesus resisted
Keep God’s cup close to you, then you will be able to resist easier.
May the LORD bless you and keep you.
May His face shine upon you and be gracious to you
May He turn His face toward you and give you peace.
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