Today, we move on and look at how God’s word can help us fight temptation. In fact, it may the most powerful weapon we have. (If you haven’t already read the other parts in this series, you can find them here: Introduction, Part 1, Part 2)
First, it’s important to understand the truth behind the scriptures we hold in such high regard. The foundation of scriptural authority comes from its source…God. “All scripture is God-breathed” (2 Timothy 3:16) which means we can rest in the assurance that it is truthful since God is truthful (Psalm 86:11). So we can count on the Word being a formidable weapon against temptation.
Also, Jesus himself used the scriptures to counter Satan’s attacks of temptation. In every instance, we see Jesus respond to Satan with, “It is written,” followed by an impactful scripture he had hidden in his heart (Matthew 4:1-11). It’s important to note that the temptation of Jesus in the desert recorded in the gospels was not the only time he was tempted. He knows what it feels like to face the attacks of Satan throughout his life. “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin” (Hebrews 4:15).
I believe Jesus was able to do this because he had such an intimate relationship with the Father that he had stored up the power of the Word in his heart. As a man, he still spent his early years of life studying and memorizing scripture and he consistently spent time in prayer so he would be prepared when and not if a temptation should arise. “For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart” (Hebrews 4:12). The same word Christ used as a weapon, we too can use to our advantage. And as an added benefit, the truth of scripture can cut through the lies we tell ourselves in regards to being able to handle sin in our lives.
Make sure to read God’s word daily, memorize scripture, and put into practice the advice God gives us on how to fight the devil. Remember that our Lord faced those same temptations and came out victorious. With his help we can too!
(In the next post, we’ll focus on how praise and refocusing our mind on God can help us in our battle with temptation. Be sure to come back and read the post.)