Our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; for he who has died is freed from sin.
This week we have been breaking down the temptation equation: corrupt desires plus the right bait plus the wrong choice equals sin. The truth is, we do not have any real choice over our corrupt desires; we inherited those from Adam and Eve. We also do not have any real choice about the bait that Satan dangles in front of us. Even if we could isolate ourselves from everyone and everything, temptation would still be there. But we do have control over the third factor in the equation, and that is the choice we make. We do not have to bite at the bait.
Yet many Christians have adopted Oscar Wilde’s way of dealing with temptation. In “The Picture Of Dorian Gray,” he wrote, “The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it.” Want to get rid of temptation? Just give in to it. Unfortunately, many Christians feel like they cannot control their sin nature. But the Bible tells us that the same power that raised Jesus Christ from the dead gives us the ability to say no to sin. Look at what Paul said in Romans 6:6-7: “Our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; for he who has died is freed from sin.” The moment you become a Christian, those corrupt desires you have are dealt a death blow. They are not totally removed from your body, but their power over you has been broken. You do not have to say yes to sin. The Bible says you have the same supernatural power over sin that Jesus Christ had.
You might be thinking, “Of course Jesus said no to temptation–He was the Son of God! But I am not the perfect Son of God.” No, but as a Christian you have the same supernatural power over sin. Romans 6:4 says, “Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.” Baptism is a picture of the future resurrection of our physical bodies, but that is only a secondary picture. Baptism is primarily about the spiritual resurrection that occurs the moment we are saved. When you trust in Christ as Savior, you die to your old way of living, and you are raised to a brand-new way of life. You are saying to the whole world, “I am through with my old way of living; I am being raised to a brand-new way of living.”
Here is the great news: that resolve has a supernatural power behind it. The same power that lifted Jesus out of that grave is working in your life right now to allow you to say no to sin and yes to God. You do not have to be a casualty on the spiritual battlefield. You do not have to become another notch in Satan’s belt. You can resist the devil. James 4:7 says, “Resist the devil and he will flee from you.”
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Blueprint For Your Destruction” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2010.
Oscar Wilde, “The Picture Of Dorian Gray,” (New York: Penguin, 2003), 21.
Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org.