A Lesson in Temptation: “I Give You only Good things because I have only Loved you with an Everlasting Love!” Genesis 2:4-9

Genesis 2:4-9Amplified Bible

This is the history of [the origin of] the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day [that is, days of creation] that the [a]Lord God made the earth and the heavens— no shrub or plant of the field was yet in the earth, and no herb of the field had yet sprouted, for the Lord God had not caused it to rain on the earth, and there was no man to [b]cultivate the ground, but a [c]mist (fog, dew, vapor) used to rise from the land and water the entire surface of the ground— then the Lord God [d]formed [that is, created the body of] man from the [e]dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and the man became a living being [an individual complete in body and spirit]. And the Lord God [f]planted a garden (oasis) in the east, in Eden (delight, land of happiness); and He put the man whom He had formed (created) there. And [in that garden] the Lord God caused to grow from the ground every tree that is desirable and pleasing to the sight and good (suitable, pleasant) for food; the tree of life was also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the [experiential] knowledge (recognition) of [the difference between] good and evil.

The Word of God for the Children of God. Gloria! In Excelsis Deo! Alleluia! Amen.

In the beginning, as God created and then developed his new world, he formed a perfect garden in which he could live in loving relationship with human beings.

Because of His Everlasting Love for us, God ­wanted humans to flourish, and He wanted all of this creation to flourish through their care and stewardship for it.

In that perfect Garden of Eden human beings lived together in harmony with the rest of creation, happily, joyously, serving and communing with God.

There humans were free to eat from any tree they wanted—except from the one which God specifically identified: “the Tree of the knowledge of good and evil.”

What did God know of the “Tree of the knowledge of good and evil” which He deliberately withheld from humanity ears?

What exactly did God know of the power of the “Tree of the knowledge of good and evil” should humanity ever become partakers of the fruit on that one Tree?

Why did God even create that Tree in the first place if He knew the enormous risk He was taking by even placing the Tree before their eyes and taste buds?

Surely God already knew the magnitude of both the “good and evil” outcomes which would manifest itself – should mankind become aware of good and evil.

Maybe you know how this story goes by now—humans disobeyed God and ate the forbidden fruit, bringing great chaos into God’s good world (Genesis 3).

Why did they eat the fruit when they were told not to?

Well, it all began with the unceremonious arrival of temptation and desire.

They were coerced, tempted to think that the fruit would make them like God, knowing good and evil, thus began temptation, desiring what was forbidden.

They were tempted to think that God was keeping good things from them.

Temptation is just the uncompromising inner feeling that we are the most independent people on the face of this planet called Earth.

That we know quite literally everything there is the ability for us all to know.

That’s something that we all go through as a kid.

Now, this lifestyle that I’m in, the same thing exists!

But it’s 10 times worse, because I am 10 times older but not so much the wiser, because of the internet, the “information super highway,” literally everything “good and evil” is right at mine and our own children’s fingertips and disposal.

When you’re in the limelight, when the full magnitude of the limelight is always available to anyone with a desire to “know” and you can get anything you want, whenever you want it and you can “encode” this limelight and keep it “secret,”

Label it “My Eyes Only” and store it in clouds behind highly complex passwords known only to users and owners of those clouds, the most intrepid of hackers.

And of course, the knowledge of God, the Father and God the Son and the Holy Spirit, from whom there is no such thing as secrets which can never be known

But we know that only because of our Heavenly Fathers everlasting love for us, He continually and continuously desires to keep His connection to His children.

Temptation and desire will always continue their efforts at singing their songs deep into our vulnerable souls – constantly enticing us to stay away from God.

It is a song and dance show they know quite expertly – ticket sales at an all time high every single moment of every single day – directly into every last ear drum.

And we listen …. and listen …. and listen …. and listen some more

So, our desire to return to God’s perfect Garden gets further and further eroded.

But perhaps we also end up forgetting, while we and our hearts and our souls are exclusively tuned in to, listening to temptation and desires radio station,

God has His own radio station ….

Psalm 19:1-5Amplified Bible

The Works and the Word of God.

To the Chief Musician. A Psalm of David.

19 The heavens are telling of the glory of God;
And the expanse [of heaven] is declaring the work of His hands.

Day after day pours forth speech,
And night after night reveals knowledge.

There is no speech, nor are there [spoken] words [from the stars];
Their voice is not heard.

Yet their voice [in quiet evidence] has gone out through all the earth,
Their words to the end of the world.
In them and in the heavens He has made a tent for the sun,

Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber;
It rejoices as a strong man to run his course.

And it too is continually and continuously playing its message ….

Proverbs 1:8-19Amplified Bible

The Enticement of Sinners

My son, hear the instruction of your father,
And do not reject the teaching of your mother.

For they are a garland of grace on your head,
And chains and ornaments [of gold] around your neck.
My son, if sinners entice you,
Do not consent.
If they say, “Come with us;
Let us lie in wait to shed blood,
Let us ambush the innocent without cause;
Let us swallow them alive like Sheol (the place of the dead),
Even whole, as those who go down to the pit [of death];
We will find and take all kinds of precious possessions,
We will fill our houses with spoil;
Throw in your lot with us [they insist];
We will all have one money bag [in common],”
My son, do not walk on the road with them;
Keep your foot [far] away from their path,
For their feet run to evil,
And they hurry to shed blood.
Indeed, it is useless to spread the baited net
In the sight of any bird;
But [when these people set a trap for others] they lie in wait for their own blood;
They set an ambush for their own lives [and rush to their destruction].
So are the ways of everyone who is greedy for gain;
Greed takes away the lives of its possessors.

When Rabbi Jesus taught his disciples to pray, “Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one” (Matthew 6:13), he was not casually suggesting it was all about someone else or something else is drawing us into temptation.

We are responsible too.

Dealing with life’s temptations and desires calls for an acute awareness of the high energy tempting ­power of sin. It includes recognizing that others, like the proverb writer and our parents, acknowledge the powerful temptation of sin.

The words of the tempter can seem so impossibly enticing or desirable, and they will eventually, inevitably wear us down. Temptation is everywhere in our lives. A wise person knows this. A wise person hears the proverb writer say, in effect, “temptation and desire takes away the lives of those who give in to it.”

Temptation and Desire will always, forever, play and sing their enticing songs.

Truth: Sin always will remain an impossibly self-destructive irresistible force.

Victorious living through Christ Jesus our Savior does not mean freedom from temptation’s desire, nor does it mean freedom from mistakes. E. Stanley Jones

We all have many vulnerabilities that can sidetrack us from reaching our goals.

Pray! Recognize the times when you’re most likely to give into temptation, and make it harder for a single moment of weakness to sabotage your best efforts.

It’s terribly sad when we continuously and continually, irresistibly, succumb to the songs of temptation desire and we just end up hurting others and ourselves.

Truth also is that the Word of God for the Children of God is also irresistible, always and forever an continually and continuously playing its powerful song.

Hebrews 4:12Amplified Bible

12 For the word of God is living and active and full of power [making it operative, energizing, and effective]. It is sharper than any two-edged [a]sword, penetrating as far as the division of the [b]soul and spirit [the completeness of a person], and of both joints and marrow [the deepest parts of our nature], exposing and judging the very thoughts and intentions of the heart.

Listening continually, continuously, everlastingly, to that particular ‘GOD’ song, how­ever, will enticingly, inevitably, leads us to life as God intended it.

Master Rabbi Jesus put it this way: “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full” (John 10:10).

For the everlasting love of us …

Consider Jesus’ temptation. First, the Spirit drove him into the desert.

That reminds us that Father, Son and Holy Spirit are one God with one purpose for us, and that purpose is the redemption of the entire creation.

Why the wilderness? Because the wilderness is the barren habitation of lizards, snakes, scorpions, barbed plants, buzzards and such like. It is representative of the world of sin, the world of the devil, the world of lies, deception and death.

It was there, on the devil’s own turf, so to speak, that Jesus encountered the devil and defanged his power to tempt, entice and to overpower humanity.

Jesus was at his weakest, physically speaking, after 40 days without food, but even at his weakest, he made short work of the devil’s best stuff—satisfaction of physical appetites (“turn these stones into bread”), power, and wealth and influence (“rule all the kingdoms of the world”), and self-indulgent arrogance (“show how important you are by jumping off the temple wall and making the angels catch you”).

When it was over, the angels waited on him. He ate a legitimate meal, provided from the Father by the angels, not a meal the devil offered. And all this was only the starting point of his long journey to Jerusalem to be crucified, killed, buried and and three days later to be resurrected unto glory — as one of us for all of us.

What more could we ask? The very God we are afraid doesn’t like us, is fed up with us and won’t forgive us again, is the God who loved us so much that he sent his Son, not to condemn the world, but to save the world (John 3:16-17).

Take heart

In Christ Jesus, God has done for us what we could never do for ourselves.

He has taken our sins on himself, forgiven us, reconciled us with himself and made us a new creation in Christ—redeemed, healed in mind, spirit and body and perfectly unified with him.

Though we do not yet see what he has made us to be in Christ Jesus our Savior, we can trust his word that at his appearing, we will be like him (1 John 3:2).

In constant and continual conflict against our own desires and temptations, then, we can each take heart. Christ is with us and for us, drawing us to him and away from sin, but when we do sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ, the Righteous One, who not only set the example for us, but also made atonement for the sins of the whole world, including ours (1 John 2:1-2).

The lyrics neither Temptation and Desire don’t want you to hear God singing is,

“No, my children, I am not keeping good things from you. See, just as I did long ago, I give you good things to eat, to love you, to heal you and to nourish you. By this gift from my hand, may you realize that you cannot flourish apart from my love.”

“First and foremost Consult God, not your fears but your hopes and your dreams. Think neither long nor hard about your frustrations, but about your unfulfilled potential. Concern yourself not with what you were tempted to do but tried and failed in, but concern yourself instead, with what it is still possible for you to do.” Pope Saint John XXIII

The Christian life is not about making one better at resisting temptation. It’s about making you new. Many people struggle to overcome temptation because they do not see the distinction between the two. But when you become a new creation in Christ, everything is possible for Christ becomes possible for you.

Trust him. He did it for you!

In the name of God the Father and God the Son and God the Holy Spirit,

Let us Pray,

God, my Father, Beautiful One, Your grace is awe-inspiring, and every day, I see more and more how wonderful Your salvation is to me. Lord, mold me, shape me into Your image. Change my heart. Conquer my mind. Fill my soul. Control my hands and my lips. I do not want to abuse the grace You bought for me on the cross. Guide me to use my freedom, not for sin, but for love and good deeds. Pray I will never ever forget how precious the grace is that You have given to me. Fix my eyes upon the cross and on the day my lowly body will be transformed to be like Your glorious body. Angus Dei! Gloria! In Excelsis Deo! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Amen.


Author: Thomas E Meyer Jr

Formerly Homeless Sinner Now, Child of God, Saved by Grace.

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