|Vol. IV Number 34||August 27, 2000|
As Christians we face on a daily basis trials, tribulations and temptations. These three are orchestrated by Satan and his followers. These followers can be either demons or people. These attempts to knock down the Christian and to destroy his testimony come in many forms. They can be either an annoyance, betrayal, or a catastrophe.
something or someone that causes trouble; a source of unhappiness; "a bit of a bother"
A temptation is an annoyance to the Christian. The Christian lives a life that doesn't want to be bothered by the sinful rudiments of the world. For instance, a lot of the shows on the television today would have been considered soft porn back in the 1960's. Today this pornography is brought into the living room. To the Christian this is an annoyance.
an act of deliberate betrayal
Consider someone that you thought was your friend only to find that they betrayed your confidence. an example is Monica L. and Linda Tripp. Though neither can be considered Christian, Monica felt betrayed by Linda.
a state of extreme (usually irremediable) ruin and misfortune
A major trial like your house burning down leaving you homeless for a period of time.
All of these are trials and temptations to the Christian. Some are annoyances that a Christian can brush off and not really consider them a temptation, while others are a major source of trial, tribulation, and temptation. The definition of major is determined by the one going through the trial. What may seem major to one may seem trivial to the other and visa versa. You cannot judge another's trial as major or minor unless you can see the heart of the individual. For instance some Christians find it very easy to stop drinking when they become a Christian while others find it a major battle.
1 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.
2 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;
3 Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.
4 But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.
Now going through trials and temptations may seem egregious to us, but James has a lesson for us in that trials, tribulations, and temptations makes us stronger in the Lord. When we overcome a trial, tribulation or temptation, we grow in Jesus, becoming more like him. So while it may seem that strange to be joyful when going through a hard time, we need to remember that we can see this as a growth experience in the Lord.
While we are going through these troubles it doesn't seem joyful to us. But after it is all over we see just how the Lord brought us through the trial and we rejoice. But James considered it a good thing to rejoice during the trial. If we can learn to count it all joy during the trial we ones who are causing the problem usually want to quit, for you have taken away the fun of the aggravation.
In the beginning of this sermon I said that trials, tribulations, and temptations come from Satan and his followers. Satan's followers are not only the demons and devils, but people around us. The followers of Satan are the ones who will do anything to make you fall back and be like them. They will tempt you with drink, drugs, sex, and any other sin that you enjoyed in the past. Most temptation comes from those around us and our own lusts and desires.
1 John 2:15-17
15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
17 And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
Sometimes the Christian has a hard time getting over a particular fault in his life. This is shown by the ones who can never get the victory over a specific area in their lives. The only recourse is through prayer and the laying on of hands of others praying for the one to gain the spiritual strength needed to overcome the temptation. This is what the Lord did for me when he took away the very desire to smoke. There was no possible way that I could quit smoking cigarettes on my own. It took the power of prayer and the Lord Jesus intervening in my life to overcome cigarettes.
If I had come to the Lord Jesus first with my troubles, I would have had a much easier time, but like many I attempted to overcome the addiction to nicotine using my own will power which lead to failure. When facing a trial, tribulation or a temptation it is imperative to seek the Lord's help and guidance in the matter. If you do this then you will be able to count it all joy when you fall into diverse temptations.
3014 E Street Philadelphia, PA 19134 Church Office Phone: (215) 634-3637 Published by: Rev. LeRoy D. Cressy (215) 535-4037
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Sunday Evening . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6:30 PM
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Copyright © 2000 LeRoy D. Cressy
Permission is granted to make and distribute verbatim copies of this transcript as long as the copyright and this permission notice appear.