Tag Archives: overcoming

“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind.  And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear.  But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.”  (1 Corinthians 10:13, NIV)

“Temptation” is any invitation to abandon God’s will.  In this world, temptation is a common experience.  However, escaping temptation is expected to be the Christian disciple’s common response.

The bible tells us that God will not allow a temptation greater than we can bear.  In every temptation — whether we are facing it for the first time or for the 50th time — God has provided us an exit.

When you are tempted, look for the exit — then take it!  – Luther

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“[Zacchaeus] wanted to see who Jesus was, but because he was short he could not see over the crowd. So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore-fig tree to see him, since Jesus was coming that way.” (Luke 19:3-4, NIV)

Our circumstances will often conspire to keep us from seeing Jesus — which includes doing the thing we know in our heart that we ought to do.

Zacchaeus was short.  The crowd was large — and taller than Zacchaeus.  But Zacchaeus didn’t curse the crowd.  He didn’t blame God; and he didn’t shrug his shoulders and surrender his desire to see Jesus.

Although short in stature, Zacchaeus’ mind was as good as anyone’s.  His will was as strong as anyone’s.  So, he didn’t focus on what he lacked; instead, he used what he had. The scripture says that Zacchaeus “ran ahead. . .”

Today, circumstances may conspire to keep you from following Jesus; but don’t give-in.  Do not focus on what you lack; seize and employ the things you have, as Zacchaeus did — and you will not only see Jesus, but Jesus will see you!  – Luther

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“Then he said to the man, ‘Hold out your hand.’  So the man held out his hand, and it was restored, just like the other one!”  (Matthew 12:13, NLT)

Oswald Chambers reminds us: “God does not give us overcoming life — He gives us life as we overcome.”

The first task in our partnership with God is obedience.  Too often, we say to God, “Show me, and I will go,” when God is saying to us, “Go, and I will show you.”  To do the latter is to live by faith in God.  To do the former is to live by common sight and human insight alone.

Today’s scripture illustrates for us the way in which our heavenly Father works — which is the same as it was centuries before in the call of the “father of the faithful” — Abraham (who was previously named Abram): “The LORD had said to Abram, ‘Leave your native country, your relatives, and your father’s family, and go to the land that I will show you.'” (Genesis 12:1)

It each case — including our own in our day — the great work of God begins with our personal commitment through obedience.  Stretch out your hand.  The overcoming power of God has never been nearer!  – Luther

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