Cloud Law up in the clouds

11Oct/110

Contemptable Temptation

Let's look at the lesson we should all pay attention to in the
Bible, the flight of the Israelites from Egypt. Was their
escape through the Red Sea merely an exploit by God or
was there some other signifigance to this act?

1 Cor. 10:1-2; Paul says that our forefathers were all under
and protected by the cloud (God's presence) that went
before them, and everyone of them passed safely through
the Red Sea. Exod. 23:21, 14:22,29; says each one of them
allowed themselves to be baptized into Moses in the cloud
and in the sea. This baptism is very signifigant because it
now meant they were obligated to the law, to Moses, to the
covenant. They were consecrated and set apart to the
service of God.

Today our own baptism in water obligates us to our
covenant with Christ. This submerssion and emerssion
symbolizes our consecration from death into eternal life. It is
our resurrection from sin and death.

During their journey, God provided them all with the same
spiritual food and water which came from the Rock, a
foreshadowing of Christ. Today we eat the same spiritual
food which comes from the Word of God. 1 Cor. 10:5,6 says
that when those who fell away from the truth by lusting after
their carnal desires perished. This still holds true today.
Once we take hold of the truth, we are then held accountable
to keep the truth and never tempt God by doubting Him.
Once He makes a promise He is obligated to keep it and so
are we!

To doubt and fear is in itself a sin. Why? It's a lack of faith.
Rom. 14:23 says that anything not done in faith is a sin.
That's a pretty steep accusation. What do you doubt and fear
in your life?

These Israelites began to fall away and perish because of
all the complaining and doubts they had. Even though God
had just brought them through a sea, it still wasn't enough
to get their trust in God. This consequently led to their
demise, their spiritual death which seperated them from
God. God is holy and righteous and therefore He cannot
fellowship with ungodly behavior. (1 Cor. 10:10,11)

When we fall away from the nourishment in the Word, we
too become malnutritioned and face temptation and the
contempt of sinning. This is why Paul warns us that no man
should be fooled into thinking that he is above being
tempted, even when you are strong in the Word. It's just
human nature to be tempted by sin. This is not a sin in itself,
it's only a sin when we give into the temptation. As a
Christian the best defense to this is to know ahead of time
how it will be handled.

Adam and Eve established man's sinful nature and as a
result we all have it. (Gen. 4) God spoke to Cain after his
irreverential offering. Imagine, having God Himself speak to
you about your behavior and you act like a spoiled child and
tell Him to "talk to the hand"!!! This is disobedience in the
biggest way. Cain disregarded God's worthiness by giving
Him only what he felt like giving Him and not offering Him
the best of what he had. We are selfish like that today in
giving God what is left over. But since God is ruler over all,
He demands that we give Him our firstfruits, the best of us,
the best of whatever we have, it all belongs to Him. We
wouldn't have any of it it weren't for Him anyway. But we are
a selfish breed of people.

Abel on the other hand honored God with his firstfruits. He
made atonement for his sins by giving God the best with a
right heart. God doesn't care about the amount, he looks at
the motive in which we give, He looks at our hearts. God
was pleased with Abel's offering, but Cain's on the other
hand was an insult to Him. God came down and told him
face to face that he had a choice to either do good or to give
into the sin that would always be crouching at the door. God
knew that after Adam and Eve's temptation, we would all be
facing the same temptations but we have a choice to either
open the door and let it in, or keep it locked and walk away.
Temptation must be mastered.

God said He would give us the strength to master it if we so
choose. He will give us the strength to make the right
decision because He promises to never leave us nor
foresake us. This is wonderful news, but Cain chose not to
heed the good news. Just like a spoiled child, he probably
sat there with his arms crossed in disrespect. And we
wonder where our children get this attitude today? Cain's
bad attitude was a sin of self-righteousness, pride and no
regard for God's advice. Instead he deliberately turned
around and murdered his brother out of his emotions.
These emotions of anger, rage, and jealousy are all carnal
which lead to an inevitable death. His heart was corrupted
with sin, therefore commiting a contemptable act of murder.
He broke the first law of "Thou Shalt Not Kill", which God
later made into one of the 10 Commandments for us to
follow today. As a result of his disobedience, God cursed
him with spiritual and eternal death, because Cain never
atoned for his sin. In other words, he reaped just what he
sowed.

1 Jn. 3:12 tells us not to be like Cain who took his nature
and motivation from the evil one. His motives were wicked
and malicious while his brother's were righteous.

Jude 1:11 says, "Woe" to those who run riotously in the way
of Cain. He abandoned himself for the sake of his own gain.

There is no way around God, we cannot continue to be
stubborn and think that He won't deal with us. It's time we
wake up and realize that we are "not all that and a bag of
chips." We do have a choice, God gave us that freedom, but
the consequences are also ours to bear. We can either
resist the temptation or not. What's important is not to be
fooled into thinking that we can do it on our own. No one can
withstand the temptation of sin without God's help. He
promises to be faithful to His Word and His compassionate
nature. He is very patient with us. We can turn around at any
time no matter what we've done if we confess our sins and
admit that we can not do this without Him by accepting His
one and only Son Jesus Christ as our intercessor. Don't let
the enemy lie to you by thinking you are not worthy. The truth
is, no one is worthy. That is the price that Jesus paid for
when He hung on the cross and took all our sins as a
ransom for our lives. He was the only One worthy because
He Himself was without sin.

Once you are saved by grace, God will give you the strength
and patience to bear up under the pressures of the outside
world, which is carnal. However, He doesn't promise it to be
an easy journey, there will be struggles and many trials, but
He will equip us with the knowledge to fight it. When we say,
"The devil made me do it" is only self deception. Even the
devil can't make us do the wrong thing, he's not that
powerful. We give him too much credit. Everything is a free
will choice, don't ever assume otherwise or blame anyone
or anything else for your responsibility.

Just how are we suppose to do the right thing? It's simple,
we are to get rooted and grounded in God's Word. He has a
whole book of instructions. Just like the Israelites who were
fed on the "Rock", it's still the same "Rock" today. We are to
feast on the Bread of Life, which is Christ. He is also the
"Living Water". When we eat and drink this, we will never go
hungry or thirsty again. We are guaranteed a place in the
Lamb's Book of Life. Is your name written in it?

To merely read the Bible is not sufficient, you must
understand it or it will not fulfill your hunger. God's Word
must feed us spiritually so that it will create in us a new way
of living. The battlefield is in our minds and our minds are
what guide us and tell us what to do. As a man thinketh, so
he is. What kind of thoughts are running through your head
today? Consequently if we have wrong motives then we are
obviously being starved to death, literally. Ask yourself if you
are spiritually fed or do you still hunger for more?

Remember when Paul said that the wages of sin is death?
The choice is up to you. Do you long for eternity in heaven or
hell? Choose one because they are both real.

If you're not sure of your salvation, get honest with God today
and ask Him to forgive your sins, even the ones you are not
aware of. He knows your heart and will reveal them to you.
Take Jesus as your Lord and Savior and tell Him you can't
do this on your own. If this confession is from a pure heart,
God will honor your request and you will soon start seeing a
difference in your life. It's amazing how free you will be once
you realize that you now have an eternal life in heaven and
will inherit all that God has for you.
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