FAITH TO ENTER GOD’S PROMISES
Tempted to Compromise with the World
Jerry A Collins
Does spiritual victory usually lead to greater spiritual battles?
How does temptation motivate to act?
Is compromise with the world our greatest ongoing challenge?
Each of us will encounter various temptations all throughout our lives. Temptations toward sex, money, gossip, slothfulness—temptations to sin. James says that when we encounter these temptations we know that they are things that never come from God. The world, Satan, and our sin nature all tempt us. God is never an author of temptation because by it’s very nature temptation is an enticement to do something contrary to the nature and will of God. An old Englishmen stated that ‘I have found this out about sin: it is first startling, then pleasing, then easy, then delightful, then frequent, then habitual, then obstinate, and then destructive, and then it brings only death!’ So we should not be deceived about the possibility of temptation in our lives. Joshua 9 displays several principles relating to temptation from the Gibeonites deception of the Israelites.
1. USUALLY SPIRITUAL VICTORY LEADS TO GREATER BATTLES 1-2
The kings of
2. TEMPTATION IS JUST AS EFFECTIVE ON ME AS IT IS YOU
Temptation is just as effective
on intelligent or well-educated people as it is on ignorant unlearned people.
When the inhabitants of
(1) They also acted craftily 3-4.
They took worn-out wineskins, old clothes. Temptations
will usually not appear as something wrong. Sin is clever, not stupid. It
is not a temptation if it is not in some way tempting. They knew that to
(2) They had old bread that was dry and crumbled, worn-out sacks, mended clothes, and patched sandals. All of it fake but as temptation does, it is usually deceptive in some way. The deception is what is necessary to get you to begin considering the path it wants you to take. The same thing happened with Eve. It will happen with us.
(3) They went to Joshua at Gilgal 6. Temptation comes to us. We do not need to go looking for it. It comes while we are minding our own business. It does not need an invitation. Temptation is inevitable not avoidable. Something as innocent as receiving more change than you should have, unexpected and unanticipated, can be a temptation.
(4) The men of
(5) The men of
(6) Joshua made peace and a covenant with them to let them live 15. Temptation is victorious not when we give in to it but when we make peace with it. It is making peace with something we should go to war with that is so wrong. We should go to war against the sin temptation entices us to indulge. We must never cave into and never make peace with the temptation.
(7) After their covenant, they found out they were neighbors 16. At a certain point, a good person (a man or a woman of God) will realize that they have been taken in by temptation. Usually the consequences we experience will enlighten us to the temptation we have succumbed to.
(8) The whole congregation grumbled against the leaders 18. Temptation can usually be best identified and dealt with when a whole network of believers is looking at it. Moral and ethical sensitivity is best dealt with by a network of believers not just leaders
(9) Josh asked the Gibeonites why they deceived
10. They gave an explanation to Josh. They said it was because they did not want to be destroyed by Josh 24-25. The explanation of sin from the standpoint of the one who is committed to it always sounds good from a humanitarian perspective. If you leave God out of the evaluation, it sounds good. For example, why shouldn’t I live with him/her? We love each other and need to see if it will work out before married or why shouldn’t women be elders? They’re gifted too?
Compare Rahab & Gibeonites:
(1) Both believed Josh would conquer land because God commanded so thru Moses.
(2) Both either hid the truth or lied.
(3) Both had self-preserve motive.
(4) Both were preserved.
(1) Rahab believed Josh would conquer before he began. That is, the Gibeonites ‘saw and believed’. Rahab believed without seeing.
Rahab lied to enemies of
(3) Rahab was commended for her action in NT. Gibeonites were not.
Rahab became part of
1. Compromise with the world will always be our greatest ongoing challenge. For the maturing believer who does not commit adultery or lie or steal or kill or worship idols or gets drunk, the ongoing challenge will be to not make deals with the world.