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Posts Tagged ‘Garden of Eden’

Temptation

May 10th, 2012

“Blessed is the one who endures temptation.” James 1:12 NKJV

“You are not an exception when tempted, but you can choose to be exceptional.”

My thoughts and comments today are about “temptation.”

The comedian who said, “I can resist almost anything except temptation,” was humorous but missed the point altogether. Temptation is exactly what you must resist. You cannot avoid temptation, but you can refuse to be vulnerable to its enticement. Your moral and spiritual well-being, potential for success, relationships, quality of life, and possibly your soul, may rest upon your determination to conquer temptations. Temptation is the devil’s brazen attempt to steal your future. The Bible refers to every person’s experience as “temptation . . such as is common to man.” 1 Corinthians 10:13 NKJV. To be tempted is not unusual, but yielding to temptation is always spiritually harmful.

Temptation is a strong, insistent urge to abandon caution and risk long-term benefits for short-term gratification. Temptation assumes urgency and priority that is hard to resist because of its resonance with desire in one’s own fallen nature. The tactic is not new, but as old as the Garden of Eden. Eve fell prey to the devil’s aspersions, doubting God’s character and truthfulness and believing the devil’s slanderous insinuation that God was unfairly withholding something good, pleasant, and satisfying. Refer to Genesis 3:1-6 NKJV. You know how well that turned out!

Denying you are tempted only strengthens its secret attraction. The power of temptation is weakened when you stop hiding the thought and desire, exposing its allure to the light of God’s truth and a trusted friend’s confidence. Stop temptation before you can’t; it is not something to toy with. There are temptations too strong to resist on your own. “Remember that the temptations that come into your life are no different from what others experience.” You are not an exception when tempted, but you can choose to be exceptional. “And God is faithful. He will keep the temptation from becoming so strong that you can’t stand up against it. When you are tempted, God will show you a way out so that you will not give in to it.” 1 Corinthians 10:12-13 NLT.

The way to beat temptation is to stay as close to God as you can. Jesus is your best example. Read Hebrews 4:15-16 NIV. Jesus taught His disciples to pray, “Lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil . . Keep alert and pray. Otherwise temptation will overpower you. For though the spirit is willing the flesh is weak.” Luke 11:4 KJV/Mark 14:38 NLT.

James, the brother of Jesus and leader of the church at Jerusalem, wrote, “God blesses the people who patiently endure testing [temptation]. Afterward, they will receive the Crown of Life God has promised to those who love Him.” Read James 1:12-17 NLT. Submit to God; resist the devil. James 4:6-10 NIV.

My prayer for you today is that you embrace only what brings you closer to God.

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Unfailing Provision

October 7th, 2010

A river went out of Eden to water the garden.” Genesis 2:10

Your life is God’s garden; He will provide exactly what you need to be everything He intends.”

My thoughts today are about “unfailing provision.”

From Creation, you can learn a principle of God’s nature and ways: whatever God creates, He also provides for sufficiently. Your life is God’s garden, and He will provide exactly what’s needed for you to be and do everything He intends. There is always perfect order in all God does, and His order consistently expresses His provision and loving care. At the beginning of time, God made a Garden in Eden and provided a river to supply its life and growth.

Before He commanded vegetation, plants, and fruit trees to cover the earth, and the fish and birds to fill the eases and skies, He provided a separation of the dry land from the seas. Before He created the animals that roamed the land, He provided the plants of the field to sustain them. And before He created man, He provided everything that man and woman would need: perfect surroundings, ample food, meaningful occupation, and loving companionship. God has not changed. Here are some things that I know about God.

(1) When He gives you a gift or talent, He will provide a time and way to share it meaningfully to bless others.

(2)When He places a dream in your heart, He will provide an opportunity to pursue that dream and find some measure of fulfillment, not frustration. “Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you your heart’s desires.” Psalm 37:4 NLT.

(3) When He allows a need to surface in your life, He has already made provision for your supply and satisfaction. “Your Father knows what you need before you ask.” Matthew 6:8 NIV.

(4) When He gives a command to obey, He will provide you the means and ability to do so. ”For it is God who works in you both to will and to do His good pleasure.” Philippians 2:13 NKJV.

God will provide all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus . . As your days, so shall your strength be.” Philippians 4:19/ Deuteronomy 33:25 NKJV. God’s provision is according to His riches, and your days! Always more, never less. The divine proportion is always ample. Look for the river that waters the Garden of His making!

My prayer for you today is that you will be confident of unfailing provision and grace.

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Thanksgiving As Benediction

November 26th, 2009

A Blessed Thanks Giving Day!

May this day be graced with His pronounced blessing and favor upon your heart and home. Thank you for your daily fellowship in God’s Word, allowing me to share something of the practicality and wonders of His truth as that has shaped my life. The privilege is mine that you would give audience to my thoughts and comments, and generously share them with others. I was just told that EveryDay Life in Bulgaria as translated by my friends, Lusi and Svetlana Arsov, has been requested by almost 900 individuals in the last 6 months since being made available by Friends Church in Sofia. I rejoice wherever and by whomever His Word is published and received into hungry hearts.

Thankfully, Allen Randolph

“God saw all that He had made and it was very good.” Genesis 1:31 NIV

Life is best when you look past things distressing to all that is blessing.”

My thoughts today are about “thanksgiving as benediction.”

When you hear the word, “benediction,” do you think of that as the closing prayer or final word of dismissal? Actually, benediction just means “a good word or saying,” which usually comes at the conclusion of some event or activity of success. It feels good when you can look at what you have done or made, and say confidently without undue boasting, “I am proud of that.” You feel satisfied with your effort, and pleased with the result.

God gave His superlative benediction in the Garden of Eden when He surveyed all that His hands had made, “and it was very good.” That’s what God felt when He created the world and all that is in it, and finished with His masterpiece, Adam and Eve. God pronounced confidently, without fear of contradiction, “It is very good.”

Jesus gave the ultimate benediction at Calvary as He hung upon a cross to die for yours and my sin as He cried to the Father, “It is finished.” The single Greek word that phrase is translated from was really a benediction . . “that is my best effort and finest result.” When you were created by the hand of God, and again when you were redeemed through faith in Christ, Heaven heard the Eternal Creator say again, and just as true as at Creation, “It is very good.”

Think about it! God looks at you and speaks a wondrous benediction of grace, “very good!” It is never your right to disagree with God, to contradict for whatever reason what He chooses to prophesy over you in grace and love. “Long ago, even before He made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in His eyes.” Ephesians 1:4 NLT. Will you give a benediction about your life, what you have done with your time, talents, gifts and opportunities, and how you have lived it?

On this Thanksgiving Day, look past whatever struggles and challenges of the moment and see the full brilliance of His grace, and the abounding nature of His love, and the generous supply of His daily provision and give thanks.  You will find you have more for which to be thankful than things about which to complain or regret. Life is best when you look past things distressing to all that is blessing. The sincere giving of thanks – God is very good” – is your fitting response of benediction for God’s goodness to you. “In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:17 NKJV.

My prayer today for you is: may your life be a resounding amen to what God has spoken.

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