YIELD NOT TO TEMPTATION
"Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation" (Matthew 26:41 NIV).
I seldom watch movies these days because of my busy schedules. However, I watched one recently that keeps me thinking. It has to do with a powerful man who fell into the hands of mere men and women because he was not watchful. In spite of the fact that the Yoruba movie is one of those secular movies acted with no religious connotation, its music interlude was the tune of the hymn, "YIELD NOT TO TEMPTATION," composed by Horatio R. Palmer around 1868. I knew the hymn (especially its Yoruba translation) very well.
According to an online source, Horatio R. Palmer regarded this hymn, "YIELD NOT TO TEMPTATION," as an inspiration. He was at work on the dry subject of ‘Theory,’ when the complete idea of yielding to temptation flashed upon him, and he laid aside the theoretical work and hurriedly penned both words and music of the hymn as fast as he could write them.
Stanzas One and Two of the hymn are warnings and advice. Horatio R. Palmer warned us not to yield to temptation for yielding is sin. Every victory we have over a temptation help us to win other temptations. Therefore, we should fight manfully onward to subdue dark passions, and ever look to Jesus, who will carry us through. We are to shun evil companions, and disdain bad language. We should hold God’s name in reverence by not taking it in vain. We are to be thoughtful, earnest, kind-hearted and true. Horatio R. Palmer knew that we cannot do all these with our own strength. So, in the refrain, he advised that we should ask the Savior to help comfort, strengthen and keep us. He was sure that the Savior is willing to aid us and carry us through. Horatio R. Palmer concluded the hymn by affirming that God will give a crown to anyone that overcomes, and that though are often cast down, we shall conquer through faith because our Savior will renew our strength. Horatio R. Palmer repeatedly affirmed that if we look ever to Jesus, He will carry us through.
Do not be like that powerful man who is not watchful. The devil is seeking everyday for who he will devour. It is not a sin to be tempted, but yielding to temptation is a sin. Beware!
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
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