Tue May 21, 2013
by Amanda Edmondson
From prison to ReTrain: Russell’s story
Mon May 20, 2013
9 types of leaders in Scripture
Mon May 20, 2013
by Justin Holcomb
5 bits of wisdom for the professional Christian woman
Sun May 19, 2013
by Shandel Slaten
Sat May 18, 2013
by Hugh Whelchel
Bet You Can’t Resist the Temptation to Watch This...
Seriously, watch the video. It’s of kids taking the marshmallow test. They are sat down in a room with one marshmallow and told that if they can resist the temptation to eat it for 20 minutes then they’ll be given a second one.
Look at them squirm and fantasize about eating it. They’re bending the rules in their little, depraved hearts. A little taste doesn’t count as eating—right?
This scenario reminds me of the Garden of Eden. God tells Adam and Eve "You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die" (Gen. 2:16-17). As we all know, they caved in to the temptation and ate the fruit.
We tend to act just like these little kids when temptations come our way. We too squirm, fantasize, and bend the rules. We try to modify or justify our behavior with rewards and punishments—and it rarely works...
- Don’t eat that Twinky, and you’ll stay trim.
- If you wait to have sex until marriage, it will be better.
- Don’t smoke, and you’ll be healthier.
- You should read your Bible/pray/repent every day, and you’ll be a better Christian.
- Don’t covet that new gadget, and you’ll be more satisfied.
Some of these things are true, yet by themselves set you up for failure. These laws are just like the rule of the mallow. Eventually after sitting there, pressing every boundary of the rule, imagining what it would be like to indulge, you’ll crack.
Rest in what God has accomplished for you already in Jesus, and fight temptation on the grounds that God's love for you doesn't depend upon your actions.
The problem with comparing this video to God’s law is that it’s not some random psychologist making the rule. It’s God. You’ll notice in the video that the kids don’t pay much heed to the psychologist—they’re immediately battling against temptation. Kid vs. Mallow. In this battle, mallow almost always wins.
The truth is that without the loving Father who’s proven over and over that he’s good, righteous, holy, and loving, we have very little chance of winning against any given temptation.
The Right Way to Fight Temptation Is This...
Spend time with God—you’ll see that he loves you and is good, trustworthy, true, and better than any fleeting pleasures sin has to offer. Rest in what God has accomplished for you already in Jesus, and fight temptation on the grounds that God's love for you doesn't depend upon your actions. It's all about Jesus. Find out what God says, and do it because he desires good for you (Jer. 29:11, Rm. 8:28). Trusting in Jesus can then free us to joyful, grace-motivated obedience.