Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall. No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it ( 1 Corinthians 10:12, 13 NKJV).
Have you ever been caught off guard by temptation? I have! The worst thing about being hit with temptation seemingly out of nowhere is that when you’re not prepared for it, it is easy to give in to it. We’re the most vulnerable when our guard is down. It is not uncommon for people to fall, who never thought they would.
Temptation is a given. It is guaranteed to happen. No person, regardless of age, gender, race, status, or title (including “spiritual” titles such as “pastor”) is exempt. So be ready.
Does that thought depress or discourage you? If so, read the promise found in 1 Corinthians 10:13 and be encouraged! Let’s look at that verse bit by bit.
1. No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man.
First of all, whatever temptation you face, regardless of how seemingly insignificant or how vile it is, is common to man. You are not the first person to experience the temptation, and you most certainly won’t be the last. There are others out there who can relate to whatever is tempting you at any given moment. One of the lies that the enemy throws at people is that their situation is unique, that no one else experiences the temptations they do, and that no one else could possibly understand. That is a lie that is meant to isolate you, and keep you from admitting your struggles to others. Don’t believe it! Others out there, perhaps even more than you think, also struggle in the same way you do. Those who have found victory over the same sin you grapple with can help you walk through it in your times of temptation. You are not alone in your struggle!
2. God is faithful.
Second, God is faithful. The Greek word, “pistos” which is translated as faithful in the verse above means “worthy to be believed, trustworthy.” So God is trustworthy. We can take Him at His word, and believe Him with 100% certainty. You can count on Him to be there for you, even at your lowest moment. How reassuring that is!
3. He will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able.
Third, the thing that God is faithful to do is to hold back any temptation that is more than you can bear. He knows your strength and your weakness. He knows your exact threshold for temptation, and will never, ever allow the enemy to throw more you way than you can bear.
4. With the temptation He will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it
Fourth, with every temptation, God will provide a way out. He’s provided an escape route for every conceivable temptation you could ever possibly experience. Have you ever been tempted to do something and right at that time, the phone rang, or there was some other interruption that kept you from doing the very thing you were tempted to do? Other times, the way of escape may simply be walking away from the situation.
The most encouraging thing is that God is for you! He wants you to walk in victory over sin and temptation, and He is there, ready and willing to assist you. Take advantage of His assistance and walk in a new level of victory today!
Father, we pray that You will indeed help us to walk in victory over temptation. We thank You that we are not alone in this struggle, but that many others have experienced the very same temptations that we experience. We thank You and praise You that You are faithful, that You will never give us more than we can bear, and that You will always provide a way of escape in times of temptation. Help us, Father, to take advantage of the way of escape so that we can walk in greater victory. Amen.