Think Like Jesus 2013
Temptation The Path to Sin
If you are a parent, you probably remember Christmas Eve. Do you recall just how hard it is to get excited children to bed? Can you remember the pressure building knowing that a bicycle, a bicycle in a box, a bicycle in a box is waiting for you to put it together, to put it together quietly, quietly before morning, and placing it under the Christmas tree? Remember deciding to leave the assembly instructions in the bicycle’s box. Do you remember taking the bicycle apart and retrieving the instructions from the box before you put the bicycle together correctly. Are you like Adam? He actually read the instructions and decided to ignore them.
“The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it. And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, ‘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.’” (Genesis 2:15-17, ESV)
It certainly seems simple enough. God gives Adam room and board in exchange for Adam taking care of the garden. His wages were clearly spelled out. God gave Adam everything, except for the fruit of one tree. God also gave Adam free will: choice. Adam was not forbidden from disobeying God.
“Nowthe serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, ‘Did God actually say, “Youshall not eat of any tree in the garden?”’And the woman said to the serpent, ‘We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden,but God said,“You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.”’But the serpent said to the woman, ‘You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.’So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise,she took of its fruitand ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her,and he ate. Then the eyes of both were opened,and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and madethemselves loincloths. And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the coolof the day, and the man and his wifehid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden.” (Genesis 3:1-8, ESV)
The serpent was “crafty.” He engaged Eve in idle conversation by telling her he heard that God forbade her from eating of every tree in the garden. Eve responded by telling the serpent that God forbade eating or touching the tree of good and evil that was in the midst of the garden or she would die. Think Like JesusMoment:“And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, ‘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.’” (Genesis 2:16-17, ESV). Eve expanded God’s word from do not eat of the fruit to not touching the fruit as well. It is important to study the Bible and get a solid foundation on what is actually said by God rather than what “you think God said or what someone else told you God said.” The serpent seized upon Eve’s failure to know the word of God and tempted her, “But the serpent said to the woman, ‘You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.’” (Genesis 3:5-6, ESV)
Think Like JesusMoment: What was Eve thinking? Eve definitely was not having a Think Like JesusMoment. “So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise,she took of its fruitand ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her,and he ate.”(Genesis 3:6, ESV) What was Eve thinking? She knew that God had instructed them not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil and even thought she was forbidden from touching it. What did she do? She touched it, ate it, and gave it to Adam, her husband, to eat. Why did she eat the fruit? What does she have to say about this? She ate because the fruit was good for food (satisfy physical needs), the fruit was pleasant to the eye (satisfy sensual desires), and the fruit would make her like God (covetousness).
Think Like Jesus Moment: What was going on with Adam? He knew what God told him but he still ate the fruit knowing it came from the forbidden tree. “…and she also gave some to her husband who was with her,and he ate.” (Genesis 3:6b, ESV) Adam just experienced his first, more would certainly come, Think Like Jesusmoment. “Then the eyes of both were opened,and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and madethemselves loincloths.” (Genesis 3:7, ESV)He failed. Adam, with the encouragement of his wife, Eve, in just one bite of fruit, separated the entire world from God,
“And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the coolof the day, and the man and his wifehid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden.But the LordGod called to the man and said to him, ‘Where are you?’And he said, ‘I heard the sound of you in the garden, and I was afraid,because I was naked, and I hid myself.’He said, ‘Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?’The man said,‘The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate.’Then the LordGod said to the woman, ‘What is this that you have done?’ The woman said,‘The serpent deceived me, and I ate.’
TheLordGod said to the serpent, ‘Because you have done this, cursed are you above all livestock and above all beasts of the field; on your belly you shall go, anddust you shall eat all the days of your life. I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspringandher offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.’
To the woman he said, ‘I will surely multiply your pain in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children. Your desire shall be foryour husband, and he shallrule over you.’
And to Adam he said, ‘Because you have listened to the voice of your wife and have eaten of the tree of which I commanded you, “You shall not eat of it,” cursed is the ground because of you;in pain you shall eat of it all the days of your life; thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you; and you shall eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your face you shall eat bread, till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for you are dust, andto dust you shall return.’”(Genesis 3:8-19, ESV)
God told Adam that he would die if he ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Adam was allowed to choose what he would do – he chose to die. Do you think you would have decided differently? Before you answer, take a moment to consider: Is God’s word and will for you a part of your thought and decision making process? Do you base your daily decisions on Biblical instruction?
Temptation Is Not Sin But Is The Pathway To Sin
“Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life,which God has promised to those who love him.Let no one say when he is tempted, ‘I am being tempted by God,’ for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one.But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire.Then desirewhen it has conceived gives birth to sin, andsin when it is fully grown brings forth death.” (James 1:12-15, ESV)
Think Like JesusMoment: When our Lord and Savior, Jesus the Christ, was tempted by Satan (the serpent), He (See Chapter 1 Think Like Jesus)chose to honor God. He chose to do more than recite the scripture. He chose to honor God by being obedient to the scripture, thereby, being obedient to God. In order to know God and be obedient to Him, it is important to study the Bible.
Adam and Jesus were tempted by Satan to challenge God’s authority over the world. Adam succumbed to temptation bringing sin into the world. The sin that Adam ushered into the world by his disobedience to God, separated the entire world from God. Jesus, too, was tempted by Satan. Unlike Adam, Jesus did not succumb to Satan’s temptations overcoming them through obedience to God’s word delivering the entire condemned world from the consequences of their sin by faith in Jesus, the Christ.