One passage per day for a whole week, based on the sermon:
- Psalm 23
- 1 Corinthians 10:1-13
- 1 Corinthians 10:23-33
- 1 John 2:3-17 (The Common Temptations–verse 16)
- Exodus 1:8-14; 3:7-10; 14:13-14; 14:26-31 (The Exodus)
- Exodus 16:1-5; Numbers 14:1-4; 14:20-23 (The Wilderness)
- Matthew 3:13 – 4:11 (Jesus’ Baptism and Temptation)
eGroup Discussion Questions – Great for personal reflection, too!
If you’re in church and you need some extra faith, you can borrow the faith of the person sitting next to you. Faith isn’t like phones that charge other phones. Sharing your faith is the way to grow your faith. [Nick: Faith is a seed, not a charge.]
The Way of Escape
[This recording is not the same broadcast I watched in service on Sunday, but it is the same message. I don’t know if things will be in a different order or out of place.]
Pastor Steven’s message come from 1 Corinthians 10:13
No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.1 Corinthians 10:13, ESV, emphasis mine
Pastor Steven says there are two types of faith:
- Intellectual Ascent — I believe it to be true in my head but it doesn’t change my behavior.
- Experiential Belief — I believe it to be true so I live my life in accordance with that truth. (This is true faith!)
[Nick: I learned these three terms as “Intellectual Ascent” (faith is right belief), “Emotional Ascent” (faith is a feeling), and “Volitional Ascent” (faith is trust and obedience) the last of which is true faith.]
There is no temptation pulling you that hasn’t pulled at someone before you.
There is no temptation pushing you around that isn’t affecting someone else in your row or around town.
Your struggle is nothing special. “Common temptation” means there is no new temptation under the sun (a la Ecclesiastes 1:9).
For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin.Hebrews 4:15, NIV
Jesus was tempted in all the ways we are but was without sin.
Pastor Steve makes a point of saying Jesus didn’t have kids, so he wasn’t tempted in every manifestation of temptation, but he was tempted in every way.
You are not alone in what you deal with.
You are not alone in your deficiency.
You are not alone in your dysfunction.
Temptation is common! We all face the temptations and we all need the same grace.
Nothing new—only delivery systems have changed.
Pastor Steve says that he doesn’t always like to preach about temptation because often preaching about temptation is based in condemnation: the “Don’t do this” kind of preaching that usually focuses on sex and drugs.
But what about the temptation to manipulate people or present a false image to get validation that will not satisfy?
A lot of Christians say “We need to go back to the way things were, be like the Early Church.” Which early church? The one in Corinth where people were getting drunk off the communion wine? (1 Corinthians 11:21) Where Paul had to write a letter about not sleeping with your mother-in-law? (1 Corinthians 5:1) [Nick: I think he means his step-mother in 1 Cor 5:1.]
Some people have bigger fig leaves to cover their nakedness (Genesis 3:7)—but we’re all hiding something—We’re pretty houses with a cracked foundation.
Bringing You Out By Bringing You Through
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.1 Corinthians 10:1, NIV, emphasis mine
You being trapped in temptation is nothing new; God’s been bringing people out before you fell in to your situation.
He didn’t just bring me out, he brought me through—for me to get something out of it.
Sometimes God will bring you through the Valley of Death to a table prepared in the presence of your enemies. (Psalm 23)
You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.1 John 4:4, NIV
When Your Escape Becomes Your Enslavement
Have you ever felt trapped?—Pastor Steve shares a story about feeling trapped with his wife at a ballet.
I’m talking about feeling trapped—not in situations—but in myself.
The Israelites weren’t slaves when they went to Egypt—they fled a famine in Canaan—but then they were perceived as a threat. (Exodus 1:1-14)
Sometimes the place you escape to becomes the place you become enslaved.
Temptation offers a way of escape—that’s why it’s so hard to deal with, like the Hebrews fleeing to Egypt to escape a famine.
The devil will always be there to provide you a tunnel. The problem is: it works for a while. Escape is enjoyable until you become enslaved by it.
Complaining is a way of escape, too, not just addiction or other sins. Blame is a way of escape: it let’s you out of the pain of self-awareness and taking responsibility. I put my freedom on you when I put my blame on you.
The Way of Escape: Through Your Fear
The way of escape was not around the Red Sea but through their fear (Exodus 14:13-14).
A lot of us escape by going on our phones, escaping to numb our own boredom—it doesn’t allow us to be present. We can’t swipe through conversations with real life people.
Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and that the Lord your God brought you out of there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm.the first half of Deuteronomy 5:15, NIV
There is nothing before you that God cannot bring you through.
Nevertheless, God was not pleased with most of them; their bodies were scattered in the wilderness.1 Corinthians 10:5
But that generation [the old generation that came out of slavery and witnessed the Exodus] was stuck in an old mindset with a new possibility.
The Types of Common-To-Man Temptations
There are only three types of temptations. They may manifest themselves in different ways, but they always come in three forms:
For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—comes not from the Father but from the world.1 John 2:16, NIV
- Lust of the flesh—What I feel. [“This makes me feel good.”]
- Lust of the eyes—What I see. [“I like what I see.”]
- Pride of life—What I think I know. (“I live by my truth.”)
The devil just recycles the same old stuff over and over—they are the same temptations that we face, that the Israelites faced, that Jesus faced (Matthew 4:1).
The Rematch: Jesus’ Temptation in the Wilderness
Jesus’ temptation in the wilderness is a rematch of the temptation of the Israelites in the wilderness. (Matthew 4 v. Exodus 16:2)
For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in the flesh.Romans 8:3, NIV
“Turn these stones into bread” (Matthew 4:3)—temptation to turn something into something it isn’t, e.g. We think that human validation will turn into something that will satisfy us.
Temptation and escape are conjoined. Temptation is a form of escape from something, but it deceives us into thinking it will satisfy us. Sin meets a need, but grace meets that need better. [Nick: Instead, it creates an even bigger hunger that needs to be filled. This is the cycle of sin/addiction that we all face.]
Sometimes you need to walk in faith when you feel fear.
Something you need to walk in forgiveness when you feel bitterness.
The devil tries to use God’s own Word to tempt God’s own Son. Don’t argue the Word of God with the one who wrote it.
“Now my soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour.John 12:27, NIV
Your True Identity Comes Through the Water
The answer to Matthew 4 (The Temptation) is in Matthew 3 (The Baptism).
As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.”Matthew 3:16-17, NIV, emphasis mine
You find your true identity when you come through the water (for the Israelites, the Red Sea, for us, the waters of baptism).
You can make it through the wilderness when you’ve been through the water.