Today's lesson focuses on distractions that the enemy places in our lives to veer us away from GOD.
We should be alert and aware that JESUS is coming back very soon so satan is working hard to try
to prolong his days and to hinder GOD'S children from walking in righteousness. There are so many
distractions and it is our duty as servants of The Most High to be wise, to watch, to pray so that we don't
fall for the tricks and into the pits of the enemy. I pray that this blesses and encourages you to keep on keeping on,
May GOD Bless you.
We begin our lesson today in the book of Hebrews chapter 12. Let's read.
Hebrews 12:1-14 "Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross,
despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.
Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.
And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening
of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.
If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?
But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.
Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?
For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness.
Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.
Wherefore lift up the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees;
And make straight paths for your feet, lest that which is lame be turned out of the way; but let it rather be healed.
Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:
I looked up the word distraction in the dictionary just to get my full focus on what it really means. I read:
Distraction: Anything that prevents you from giving your full attention to something or someone.
In this case, we will say GOD. A distraction in our spiritual lives keep us from giving our full attention to The LORD. I believe that the number one thing that distracts us as children of GOD is temptation and sin. JESUS understands that. Let's go to the book of Luke and see what HE taught us about that.
Luke 21:33-36 "Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.
And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.
For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth.
Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man"
Mark 14: 38 "Watch ye and pray, lest ye enter into temptation. The spirit truly is ready, but the flesh is weak"
Now we must understand that temptation happens to all humanity. The devil would like to make us believe that when we are going through a temptation or a trial that we no one else understands and that we are alone, and that we cannot possible withstand and overcome. This is not true. Here's what GOD'S Word tells us.
1 Corinthians 10:13 "There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it."
Praise The LORD for this promise! We are overcomers...Romans 8:37 tells us that we are MORE than Conquerors through Jesus Christ! Understand today beloved that you are in a spiritual war and whatever temptation the enemy is bombing you with, if you will resist, The LORD WILL MAKE A WAY OF ESCAPE! See, GOD does not tempt us with sin....Let's go to the book of James chapter 1.
James 1:1-16 " James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.
My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;
Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.
If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.
For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways. Let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted: But the rich, in that he is made low: because as the flower of the grass he shall pass away. For the sun is no sooner risen with a burning heat, but it withereth the grass, and the flower thereof falleth, and the grace of the fashion of it perisheth: so also shall the rich man fade away in his ways.
Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him. Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.
Do not err, my beloved brethren."
By this we learn that GOD is NOT the tempter...that is satan. Remember in Matthew chapter 4 it tells of how JESUS was in the wilderness and He had fasted forty days and nights and it says that the tempter came to him and said if you are the Son of GOD turn these stones into bread. The Bible called satan The Tempter, so number one get that deep into your heart and your mind...when you are tempted, it is of satan. Also, understand that he has done his research and he knows what you like, so he will place something or someone in front of you that is very appealing and it will be hard at times to say no...but always remember that through Christ You can do anything because He gives you strength. (Philippians 4:13)
Now, I stated before that we who are in Christ Jesus are in a spiritual war. Here's what GOD'S Word says about that.
Ephesians 6:12-18 "For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;"
We are in a battle and it's a spiritual battle. Now understand that satan will use people at times to come at us, and to try to distract us from what is really going on. Always remember it's not about that person...they are just a pawn in satan's evil plan to distract and veer you off the path. Pray for the person and realize this is an attack of the devil.
1 Peter 5:6-11 " Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:
Casting all your care upon him; for HE careth for you.
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devou Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world. But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto HIS eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you. To him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen."
Understanding that we are in a spiritual war. If we are going to resist temptation and sin, then we have to have a Battle Plan, that is a strategy to fight back so that we protect ourselves against the enemy. Also, understand that we cannot do this alone, we have to be backed up by the power of The Holy Spirit or we will lose every time. The enemy is too strong for us, but Praise The LORD we have a big brother...JESUS CHRIST who can and will put him in his place when we trust, obey, and call upon HIS HOLY NAME...Praise YOU JESUS!
The number one thing making your battle plan is to realize that to be tempted is not a sin. Jesus was sinless...the Bible tells us in 2 Corinthians 5:21 that "He who knew no sin" talking about JESUS and we know that JESUS was tempted in the wilderness. If you are a child of GOD, you are going to be tempted of the devil, get ready for it...it's coming, but don't be afraid. JESUS said, I have overcome the world."
John 16:33 "These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world."
Being tempted is not sin, it becomes sin when we give in to it. Remember what JESUS did every time satan came at HIM with a temptation? HE cut him with HIS sword. The Word of GOD...It is written devil...It is written. That is what we have to do. We are not to argue and put our opinions in but to simply use the Word of GOD. Remember we read in Ephesians 6 it told us that our sword of the Spirit is The Word of GOD. That means that we have to daily get in GOD'S Word and study it so that we are familiar with it and we can use it in our war with satan. How can we use it if we do not know what it says? I encourage you greatly to get in GOD'S Word the Bible and read it and study it everyday and let it change you from the inside out and make you a GREAT warrior for The Kingdom of GOD!
The spiritual battle many times starts inside our minds. That means that we are going to have to be aware of every single thought that we process. This can be a very tedious task but we must do it in order to survive and thrive spiritually. Our minds are constantly producing thoughts. Some are good some are bad. We have to take control from the enemy, kick him out of our minds through the power of GOD and understand that The HOLY SPIRIT empowers us to do that!
2 Corinthians 10:5-6 "Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of GOD, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; and having a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled."
1 Corinthians 2:16 "For who hath know the mind of The LORD, that HE may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ."
Bringing into captivity, EVERY THOUGHT! We who are born again, washed in the Precious Blood of JESUS CHRIST have everything inside us to bring every thought under captivity. We have been given the mind of CHRIST Himself...but we have to tap into the power on the inside of us and trust and obey. Remember, MORE Than conquerors in Christ JESUS.
I would ask you to think about the things that satan tempts you with the most, doesn't it begin with a thought? Now if you and I were aware of all our thoughts and we would submit to The HOLY SPIRIT and filter those thoughts, casting down every single one that was not of GOD then we would not place ourselves in a position where it is harder to say not to temptation. If you are in a physical battle, and you are guarding a doorway against the enemy...and you allow one enemy soldier to come in, and then another and another...it's going to be harder for you to fight and win...but if you take out the enemy before he gets in the door...then you will stand strong. Its the same with thoughts in our minds. Every time an evil thought or a tempting thought comes into your mind, just stop and begin to pray in your mind. Father, I'm trying to live for You and please You but the enemy is placing these thoughts in my mind, please help me to focus on You and to cast down this evil imagination that is coming against me. Pray that and then open the Word, or begin to think on the scriptures or begin to worship and praise GOD and to thank JESUS for dying on the cross for your sins...begin to count your blessings and praise HIM...and soon the enemy will flee. You can do this because The LORD is with you and HE is The MIGHTIEST WARRIOR! Praise HIS name... HE understands what it's like to be weak in body and to be tempted...HE KNOWS! Praise The LORD!
Remember: A thought produces an emotion...
An emotion produces a feeling...
A feeling produces an action....
An action produces a habit.
Philippians 4:8 "Finally brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, THINK ON THESE THINGS."
Philippians 4:9-13 "those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the GOD of peace shall be with you. But I rejoiced in the LORD greatly, and now at the last your care of me hath flourished again; wherein ye were also careful, but ye lacked opportunity. Now that i speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me."
Don't be afraid of the battle, with Christ you have already won! Get in the Word of GOD and remember HIS words to us, Watch, and Pray. He is coming back soon...Let's run this race with patience and endurance and finish well! You can do it through JESUS CHRIST who is with you and will NEVER leave you!
Hebrews 12:1 "Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us. Looking unto JESUS the Author and the Finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before HIM endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the Throne of GOD."
Revelation 22:12-14 "And, Behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according to his work shall be. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. Blessed are they that do HIS commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city."
Dearest Heavenly FATHER...
I come to You today asking You to help me and all Your children to run this race with patience and with endurance and that we don't just finish, but we finish well. FATHER, I'm asking that You help us to obey YOU and to cast out every evil thought and imagination so that we will not fall into the enemy's pit. I'm asking that YOU remind us that we belong to YOU and that we must watch and pray and that it is our duty to bring our mind's under Your authority. Help us to battle satan and to put on the whole armour every day so that we can do what You have placed us here on the earth to do. Increase our faith and our wisdom. Help us to be faithful to you in all things. We give all glory and honor that is due to Your righteous Holy name and we ask In the name of Your precious SON...JESUS...Amen.
June 1, 2013
June 2, 2013