I agree with Joel Osteen who when interviewed by Oprah on “the Next Chapter,” reluctantly affirmed that homosexuality is a sin. Even so, as I am a minister of the gospel for 30 years, I strongly disagree with Osteen’s belief that “sinners go to heaven.” Christians who repeatedly sin after they have become born again are an insult to the blood of Jesus Christ of Nazareth. The truth is that most believers who habitually sin actually experienced a false conversion and they are really not saved, which is yet “another story.”In other words, they sin because they are not saved. Nevertheless, the good news is that since sin can be overcome because of the Lord’s blood sacrifice on the cross, homosexuality and all other sins and perversions can be resisted and defeated as will. However, it won’t be easy because demons are involved in all sin. Consequently, demons will fight dirty to keep you bound to the sin that so easily besets YOU!.
Yetit is truly amazing that THE main clue to overcoming temptation is built right into the Lord’s prayer, particularly the statement, “lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.” It is Satan’s job to tempt and it is the work of the Holy Ghost to keep us from being led into temptation. So it is really a matter of commonsense to understand that first, we must know how the devil tempts each of us as individuals and to ensure that we do not grieve or quench the Holy Ghost as He protects us from yielding to temptation. Since He is our Helper, we have to create and maintain conditions conducive to receiving His assistance.
Here is THE BIG SET UP!
1. The first thing the devil must do to set you up to be led into temptation is to lie about what God has or has not said. Satan did so with Eve and tried to do so with the Lord Jesus Christ. He will either out-and-out lie, or take a scripture out of its context and mis-apply it to your particular circumstances.
2. The lie is skillfully planned to coincide with your major character defect. In my case, I was born with a lack of patience. So he set me up by giving me a so-called “word from the Lord,” and then caused me to have to wait so long, that I then took matters in my own hands to “make things happen.” After many, many mistakes, one of my virtues or fruits today is patience..
3. Our false assumptions cause the enemy to “not have to work so hard.” For example, if you are a woman who assumes that just because she has the desire and the need for a mate, that God is going to send you a man fit to be your husband, you are already “set up.” No where in the bible does God declare that every woman has a divine soul mate. There are plenty other assumptions that God’s people make from submitting their souls to the doctrines, teachings and practices of false and or deceived prophets and ministers. The devils purpose is to use these people to cause you to make the false assumptions necessary to “lead you into temptation.” So examine your dreams, visions and prophecies to find the set up.
4. Another way of seeking the Father to “deliver you from evil,” is to ask the Father to expose ALL of the darkness that is around you. He will not do so unless you sincerely desire to know the truth, wherever truth will take you.
5. What keeps darkness from being exposed is our “rose-colored glasses.” As long as darkness is not exposed, we will not overcome sin. To remove the veil of deception, learning from the discipline of the Holy Ghost means that after a person has experienced the hand of the Lord dealing with him, he is gradually broken by the Lord. When this process is complete, you will be delivered from your former state of murmuring, fretting, complaining, personal opinions, self-interest, into a state of obedience.
According to the Apostle John, We have 3 enemies that lead us into temptation: the world, the flesh, and the Devil. According to experience, the world is the first to be overcome. If you can overcome the temptations brought to you by the world, then you are on a path leading to your victory to overcome sin. Next is the flesh. The Holy Ghost, through breaking and crucifixion will lead you to walk in the spirit and not fulfill the lusts of the flesh. To deal with the devil, you will need to uncover his agenda, a specialized set-up that is specifically designed to cause YOU to sin.
To do so, we need to always keep in mind that the demons assigned to you and I will resist us at every turn with the very elements of the world and our flesh that are already against us. Such elements are in the very makeup of our personalities. Therefore, we need to constantly seek God in prayer in order to know ourselves better than the devil knows us. We need to understand ourselves so that we know how to act and walk in humble dependence upon the Risen Lord for protection from the evil one–a protection which can only operate as we look to the blood of Jesus.
Certainly, I believe in the bible. However, those who claim a strict adherence to it often misapply what they read and study, putting others in bondage. We must first realize the bible is a book that was written to others. Surely we are blessed to have an opportunity to read it. Just know that Christians in several centuries did not have the same opportunity. The fact that we HAVE the written word at our fingertips is both a blessing and at times, it can be a curse when it is not “properly divided” or in other words, misapplied. You MUST keep yourself open to all truth that will give you light upon any possible ground that you may have given to the spirits of evil to be successful in leading you into temptation. It is a constant check and re-check to see if the enemy has gained admittance into your mind, your soul, your spirit and your body.
Therefore, the Lord’s prayer is actually an outline for not falling to temptation that leads to sin, particularly, “lead me not into temptation, but deliver me from evil or “the evil one.” If you find that you have resisted and refused any specific ground and you still cannot get rid of it, you must seek light from God regarding the cause. The cause can often be found in your past thoughts and beliefs. When God exposes the darkness and you have repented by refusing to act and function in former ways, the enemy has to give up the ground. However, he won’t give it up until you have disavowed it. Disavowing the temptation is not only verbal descent. All ground is not necessarily removed at the moment that you have expressed your refusal. No! Your refusal must be reasserted by your actions or lack thereof, and you’ve got to stand your ground until each point of captivity is detected and refused. Faith without works is dead.
For example, your unsaved family–even those that insist that you go to church because it is a family custom—- is “the world.” Very often, the enemy will use family and friends as the tools to “lead you into temptation.” God has shed light on your situation in His own way. The bottom line is that you have to stand on what has been revealed to you and not the opinions and promptings of the significant others in your life. Remember that even though we wrestle not against flesh and blood but principalities and powers, you must resist the temptation to passively give in to those who can pull your emotional cords and strings.. If you give in, you will remain deceived and even be led into sin by the temptation of other people’s opinions and beliefs. It is important to be aware that when the demons assigned to you see that their hold is coming to an end, they do not let go until the cause is fully removed, and they will attempt to “re-tempt” you if the thing through which they have attacked still exists in any degree. The methods of demonic temptation are what I call “the IONS,”–attraction, seduction, deception, distraction, accusation, and condemnation are but a few.
In “Secrets of Spiritual Warfare,” by Jessie Penn Lewis, the “fighting through” period is a very painful time:
“There are bad moments of acute suffering and intense struggle, arising out of the consciousness of the resistance of the powers of darkness in their contest for what the believer endeavors to reclaim. The moment he begins to advance from weakness into strength, he becomes aware of the strength of the evil spirits resisting him; consequently, he feels worse when fighting through. This is a sign of deliverance, although the believer may not think or feel it is so. The last thing given to the spirits of evil is generally the first thing removed because light is given upon the experience of the moment and deliverance from bondage of the moment is the most urgent need. Sometimes it is the advanced stage of terrible bondage that reveals a person’s condition to himself, and it is not until he starts, point by point, to fight back to his normal condition that he discovers the depth of the pit he has fallen into and the slow work of regaining the liberation of his whole being from the power of the deceiving enemy. ” (pg. 206)
We can assist you to defeat sin, temptation and the devil. Just give us a call and book a telephone counseling session by calling 518-477-5759