Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone
James 1:13 (NASB)
Thoughts on Today’s Verse
How quickly and easily God is blamed when we suffer some calamity or fall into sin. “God should not have allowed this to happen,” we murmur – or “God made me like this, so it’s His fault!”.. is our accusation.. “and I couldn’t help it”, is often the lame excuse we make, when we fall into temptation and sin. But all the misery of the world, and the evil with which we are surrounded is rooted in sin, and whether it is self-inflicted or comes from the hands of another – never let it be said that it is God’s fault that we sinned.. or that we were tempted by God. God is good. God is eternally and unchangingly good – and He cannot be tempted by evil nor can God ever tempt anyone to sin.
God is the Creator of all that is good and the Source or every good and perfect thing. He is the Father of lights. Not only is He the Creator of the brilliant sun and the Maker of the starry heights but He is the Well-spring of all spiritual light and the Fountain-head of all wisdom and goodness and grace – while Satan is the father of darkness, who kindles all sorts of evil against us and instigates every kind of deception, temptation, wickedness and sin.
The Scriptures give a clear distinction between trials and temptations. God uses trials for our benefit and to teach us important truths, which enable us to grow in grace and in a knowledge of Him. And God uses trials for our eternal benefit while Satan sends temptation to harm us and hinder us in our spiritual growth. Christians should never say that it was God Who tempted them.. for all temptation arises from sin and Satan, which is designed to entice us away from the godly path of righteousness. Whether it is the lust of the flesh within or the lure of the world without, all temptation is rooted and grounded in sin.
If we succumb to the temptation we sin. If we resist the temptation we do not sin and God will often turn that temptation to sin into a meaningful trial for good, which He graciously works together for our eternal benefit and for His eternal glory.
We who are saved by grace through faith in Christ are God’s children and have all that we need for godly living in Him. We should be careful to recognise that God is light and that in Him is no darkness at all. We should not fall into the trap of complaining about the fiery trials that befalls us nor should we be tempted to stray from the godly path that leads to life and light in the Lord. Rather we should consider that the trials and sufferings through which we are going are not worthy to be compared with the glory that will be revealed in us.
Probably the most important way to turn a temptation for evil into a trial.. that God will use for good, is to maintain a close relationship with Him through continuous prayer, ongoing praise.. and a thankful heart for all His goodness and grace towards us. This is achieved as we nourish ourselves on the living Word of truth – and walk as children of light, knowing that we who formerly walked in the dark shadow of death and destruction, are now light in the Lord. May our light of the Lord so shine forth in our lives that men may see our good works and glorify our heavenly Father of lights.
Heavenly Father, thank You that You are my God and that You use all the trials of life for my eternal benefit. Keep my heart from complaining and may I learn to walk in the light as Christ is in the light so that I may grow in grace and learn more of You with every passing day – in Jesus name I pray, AMEN