Daily Devotions from The Word Of God… From the heart of Ed Algreen

Posts tagged ‘Temptation’

The Origin Of Temptation

Post Date:

Tuesday, 2017-05-30
SCRIPTURE

From:

James 1:13-15 (ERV)

Text:

13 Whenever you feel tempted to do something bad, you should not say, “God is tempting me.” Evil cannot tempt God, and God himself does not tempt anyone. 14 You are tempted by the evil things you want. Your own desire leads you away and traps you. 15 Your desire grows inside you until it results in sin. Then the sin grows bigger and bigger and finally ends in death.
OBSERVATION:
Obviously James was not teaching about something that would take place in a future world filled with sin, he was dealing with a problem in his own time. God has it in His Word, because He knew before hand that this would still be an issue in our world today.
APPLICATION:
How often have we heard excuses given for the causes of sin. We’ve all heard things like these: “The Devil made me do it”; “My spouse made me do it”; “Friends that I trusted made me do it”; “It was God that led me to do it so He could get my attention”. I’m sure there are other excuses, but aren’t we really quick to find something, or someone, to blame our own willfulness and sin on? Read the verses again, God plainly tells us how it all starts. To my unbelieving friends reading this devotional, it may be challenging for you to get a handle on this, because you are probably not in the Bible regularly, where you can learn about the ideals of God and therefore know when you cross the line of sin. If you feel led to correct that problem, let me encourage you to read my Footnote where you will find tips on ways to correct that dilemma. To my Christian friends, let me assure you that for as long as we remain in this world, we will face trials and temptations. Our chosen Scripture explains how this all starts, so knowing the source, you know how to pray, and what to pray for. Please stop the blame game and take responsibility for the true source of temptation. This could also go a long ways in helping you to avoid temptation, God being your helper.
PRAYER:
Lord God, Your Word is powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword. Please work on us to honor Your Word by obeying what You command of us and teach us. Lord, we must take responsibility for our own inner self, and stop finding excuses for who else may have caused our sin. I love the words from an old song: “It’s me, It’s me oh Lord, standing in the need of prayer. It not my sister or my brother but it’s me oh Lord, standing in the need of prayer”. As I encourage all my readers to do a deep self examination of this serious issue, I must confess personally Lord, that it’s me standing in the need of prayer, for my desire is to be recognized and counted as a child of God by all those who come into contact with me. This is only possible with the guiding and protective hand of the Master guiding and directing my every move and word. I pray that God might speak to you today about your need, friends, and I pray that it won’t be in vain! AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

‘Good Seed’ or ‘Weeds’?

Post Date:

Friday, 2017-02-10
SCRIPTURE

From:

Matthew 13:40-42 (GNT)

Text:

40 Just as the weeds are gathered up and burned in the fire, so the same thing will happen at the end of the age: 41 the Son of Man will send out his angels to gather up out of his Kingdom all those who cause people to sin and all others who do evil things, 42 and they will throw them into the fiery furnace, where they will cry and gnash their teeth.
OBSERVATION:
This is two days in a row now that I’ve read where Jesus was asked to explain a parable that He shared, and in both cases the explanation was very pointed, but yet very clear. In the story today Jesus had shared the parable of the weeds, that left the disciples scratching their heads, as to the point that Jesus was really aiming for them to grasp and apply to their lives. Not trying to hide anything, Jesus went on to explain the ‘good seed’ and the ‘weeds’ and the application. Let’s look at how this can be applied to our lives even today.
APPLICATION:
It has always been clear that those who sin will never enter the kingdom of God, but some additional words popped off the page at me, when Jesus explained who all His angels will gather together and throw them into the pit of Hell. At least two Bible translations explained very vividly all who would be included in that group. Friends, we often remind ourselves that none are perfect, and that we all sin – children of God and non-believers. You might recall that in another scripture Jesus referred to the children, and He said that He would not tolerate anyone who causes one of these little ones to sin. I believe that statement and the one used in verse 41 above relays the same message. In other words, whether you sin (disobey God’s commands in mind or deed), or if you cause another to sin (in mind or deed), you will be weeded out – much like a gardener would remove weeds from their garden. Jesus said that ALL weeds would be thrown into the fiery furnace for Satan to punish and devour. May I suggest that we may cause others to sin way more often than we would care to accept responsibility for? Friends, let’s remember that although the world may see what would appear to be jest and perhaps even mockery, yet God knows the heart and mind of man, and He knows exactly the intent of the individual doing the act or saying the words. God also knows the impact that our ill-gotten intentions have on the individual to whom we are delivering our evil intentions. Imagine with me for a moment if you knew how badly words might hurt or discourage a person, would you really say them? Imagine how your actions or untimely or hurtful words might distract a person from sharing or possibly hearing the truth of God’s words, and question yourself as to whether you should have created the distraction for that friend. Friends, please join me in committing to always remember that if what we say or do in the presence of others, serves no purpose in drawing them closer to God, then we are probably doing just the opposite. God is our judge, and He knows our deepest intentions. Will He place us with the ‘Weeds‘, or are we truly ‘Good Seed’? I believe you know the answer to that question already. May I encourage you to seek God’s face and His helping hand to help place you on the right track before it is eternally too late?
PRAYER:
Father, we sincerely need Your help today, especially after being reminded of how often we may place an obstacle in the way of others that may separate them from You. Please dear Lord, help us to never be a stumbling block for anyone else truly seeking Your face, or seeking to hear Your tender voice. Forgive us Lord for the times we discourage others, or place a roadblock in their path to a closer relationship with You, or even from accepting You as Lord in the first place. There was a tremendous forgiveness afforded to us when we bowed before You and asked for forgiveness of our sin. Please help us to stay directed towards being examples of Your forgiving spirit, and the kind of love that You expressed at Calvary for us. This will mean loving others right where they’re at, and not how we want them to be. May we be usable vessels in Your service and never a stumbling block for any of Your children, is my humble prayer. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE:
There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’.  If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

How to Guard Against Temptation

Thursday, 2016-09-08

Scripture

Bible Reference: Mark 14:38

Bible Text: 38 Keep watch and pray, so that you will not give in to temptation. For the spirit is willing, but the body is weak.

Bible Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)

My Take

I was touched by the fact that Jesus was going through so much emotionally in the Garden of Gethsemane, yet He didn’t get upset with his disciples over not caring about Him. Instead, Jesus gave them advice that they could use long after He had left them. He probably was also ministering to Peter for being such a ‘motor-mouth’, when he told Jesus that he would stick with Him through ‘thick and thin’, so Jesus had to remind him here that his spirit might be willing, but his body is weak. So what is the application in this verse for us today? I believe there are several things:

  1. Unless we ‘watch‘, for the advisory (Satan) – being on guard for the things that are opposing God and His perfect design, then Satan will pounce on us through various temptations, causing us to sin against God;
  2. Unless we ‘pray‘ to the Master and depend on His strength, His wisdom and His power, then we will quickly fall into the trap of Peter, where our spirit might be willing and wanting to obey God, but the weakness of our flesh will push us towards the things of this world and its master – Satan;
  3. No matter how willing our spirit and personal desire might be, we are weak without the awesome power of the Holy Spirit that God has empowered us with. We must therefore learn to call on God and depend on Him for ALL things – even those things that we feel very capable of handling ourselves, to avoid failure and being ‘sucked in’ by the advisory. Remember, we can do ALL THINGS through CHRIST, who strengthens us! He’s our Rock, our Redeemer and our soon coming King!

Have you surrendered your life to Him friend? Will He recognize your voice when you call on Him as being one of His? It you have doubt, may I encourage you to read my ‘Footnote’ and follow my suggestions, so that you may KNOW – without a doubt, whose you are?

Prayer

Lord Jesus I thank You for Your awesome love and for caring for us, even when we should be thinking about others. You know what we need, and just as You expressed to Peter and his teammates in the garden, I believe You are still very interested in seeing Your children live according to Your will and way, because of being totally surrendered to You. In and of our own strength, we can do nothing towards being holy or totally dedicated to our calling of being ‘little Christs’ – Christians. We need You to help us live noble Christian lives in this world of hate, strife and sin. Not only will we be able to do all thing through Christ who strengthens us, but Lord I believe You will be at liberty to do all things through us – those who have totally surrendered to You and very open to allowing You to work through us. May You accomplish great things today Heavenly Father, and may we be found acceptable in Your sight, so that You may work through us, if need be. In total humility and surrender to You, I am asking these things dear Jesus, AMEN!

Footnote

If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to www.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Share A Burden In Love Today

The Holy Bible

1 My brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in any kind of wrongdoing, those of you who are spiritual should set him right; but you must do it in a gentle way. And keep an eye on yourselves, so that you will not be tempted, too. 2 Help to carry one another’s burdens, and in this way you will obey the law of Christ.

(Bible Translation and Location: The Good News Translation – Galatians 6:1-2)

Thoughts:

I believe that way too often in today’s society we become complacent when it comes to correcting a brother, because we don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings, or we feel like they have their respective rights to believe as they want. Unfortunately this results in chaos and general non-compliance with the Word of God. We, Christians, take most of the laws/teachings of the Word seriously, for we believe, and try very hard to practice what the Word of God demands. That is, until it comes to correcting a brother or a sister. I want to assume in this study that we are endeavoring to follow Paul’s teaching. Don’t you suppose that would result in a brother for life, if we act in love? In other words, if we were to approach that brother in a gentle and loving way about certain sin that you’ve observed in his life? Conversely, I want you to consider what might happen if you observe sin and don’t try to help. Don’t you see where Satan would easily stick his nose into your business and temp you to start a gossip ring about that brother that will quickly lead to hurt, unforgiveness, character destruction, and worst of all distancing yourself from that brother and perhaps even his acquaintances? Friends, Paul even reminds us about how tender and self-destructive this subject could be, for he tells us to be careful so that we ourselves are not tempted into the same sin we are accusing our brother of. However, by helping a brother overcome a weakness, we are helping him carry the burden that he is struggling with, and a burden shared becomes half the weight to the bearer. This action is obedience to the law of God friend, exactly where we should strive towards every day.

Prayer:

Because of our fear of rejection and deep desire to not cause disharmony, this is probably one of the greatest weaknesses, and challenges, of Your children today dear Lord. However, You have included these instructions in Your Word to help us be over-comers and stronger warriors for You, not to oppress us and cause us grief. Please help us to take Your commands seriously. Please help us to always seek to help a brother overcome His weakness and/or his sin, for no other reason than to see him reunited and strengthened in You. Lord, I believe that Your grace is all sufficient and extremely powerful. Please help me to place my hand in Yours and welcome Your all sufficient love and direction as I strive to live daily for You and imitate You in every way. Please help me to always seek to help others, knowing that You are my support and my guidance in every way. I love You Lord, and ask this in Your wonderful and all-powerful name, AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!

Ask God to Guard You

The Holy Bible

    Post a guard at my mouth, God, set a watch at the door of my lips.

    Don’t let me so much as dream of evil or thoughtlessly fall into bad company.

    And these people who only do wrong — don’t let them lure me with their sweet talk!

(The Message – Psalm 141:3-4)

Thoughts:

I believe that I can easily identify with David, but really wish that I could be more like him in taking everything before the Lord in prayer and open, pure, relational conversation. Let me explain, Satan is out to get God’s children in every way possible. He is very conniving and knows our weaknesses and exactly how to distract us from our Christian walk. Let’s suppose that I am a recovering alcoholic. The biggest warning to a person recovering is that they stay far away from any distraction or temptation that might entice them to take the first drink again. How many times, and how many people still go after these individuals to just join them in the bar, they don’t have to drink just sit and socialize with old buddies? Or a former smoker invited into a smoke-filled room? Won’t they breathe in enough of that smoke to be tempted into a very large cigarette or cigar? Friends, I believe you should be getting my drift by now. Even when God has caught hold of our lives and rescued us from the pit of sin and destruction, He still allows us to live on this earth and learn to depend on Him when tempted, but I sincerely believe that He expects us to stay way clear of anything that Satan may use to distract us from our heavenly walk. I heard a story about a recovering alcoholic. Every day he had to walk past the bar that he used to purchase his alcohol when he was overtaken by its addiction. After finding God and, with His help, got on the road to recovery, he took a different road home altogether to avoid the temptation. David begged God to place a guard, and to even help distract his dreams to avoid him thoughtlessly falling back into sin. Friends, God wants you to avoid sin. He sacrificed His only Son to provide the means for a better life for you. Why dabble in sin when you have a future that is ‘out of this world’ waiting in store for you? Please don’t be timid in talking with our heavenly Father about things that we see as a trap to ensnare us. And especially don’t be timid in asking God to guard you and protect you from those traps that may not be evident to you. Try your very best, with God’s help, to live today in light of the bright hope that is ours in heaven! You won’t regret it friend, and you have the awesome power of the creator of the universe to help strengthen you! You can do it!

Prayer:

Lord Jesus, thank You for saving me from the depths of sin and the evil so evident on this old earth. Please continue to guard my eyes so that my mind may remain pure, and guard my lips so that my heart might be pure. Please give me the boldness to express the love of God that is shown to me every day in so many ways, so that others might catch a glimpse of your handiwork, and might want to also know You as their personal Savior. There is nothing secret from You, so You are well aware of the temptations that Satan throws at us to entrap us. Please guard us and direct us always in the path of righteousness so that You may continue to use us for Your glory. Thank You for loving Your kids in such awesome ways! May we do our part to make You proud, yet humble enough so that You may complete Your work in us. I ask this in the precious name of my Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ, AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL! Just let me know you are coming by emailing me!

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