11. Temptations

In Your Bible Read This

1 Tim. 6, 3-21, Daniel 4,28-37, 1 Kings 19.

Here Is Your Memory Verse

Endure hardship with us like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No-one serving as a soldier gets involved in civilian affairs, he wants to please his commanding officer. Similarly, if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not receive the victor’s crown unless he competes according to the rules. 2 Timothy 2, 3-5

Afterwards Talk About This

Divide into two and ask each other the questions of integrity.

Something To Do Before Next Time

Bring from your home any magazine, book, video, idols and anything else that should not be there and burn them together in Jesus’ name.

Written Diploma Work

Write one page on how the temptations could possibly affect you

Meditate Word By Word On This Verse

2 Timothy 2.20-21

Spend a Minute to Change the World

Pray For England – 46,000,000 secular people in serious spiritual decline. Many hope for another revival, lots of churches in renewal.

Be sure to teach this lesson to others. Always pray and prepare well adding your own verses and stories to bring it to life.

God’s plan is always to raise leaders who will faithfully serve him for a lifetime but Satan’s plan is to strike the shepherd so that the sheep are scattered. We should not be ignorant of his schemes which present us with dangers like these, Zechariah 13.7, 2 Cor. 2.11.

Temptations

In the wilderness Satan tempted Jesus to abuse his position and spiritual power to provide for himself, then tempted him to take a short cut to avoid suffering and finally Satan suggested self-promotion. Jesus said No every time! A decision taken by you now may save your life later.

Another set of temptations that leaders face is called ‘girls, glamour and gold.’

Girls, (Or Guys !) A Misuse Of Sexuality

Allowing sensual words and pictures into the eye can all too easily lead to sex outside of marriage, especially in times of loneliness, stress or travel. A fall damages ministry, marriage and the trust of many. Prov. 6,20-35; 5, 7-14.

Glamour, A Misuse Of Position

You hear pride boasting about what “I” have done, instead of honouring God. Pride caused Satan’s downfall and has deceived a host of leaders since. Daniel 4, 28-37. Proverbs 16.18, 29,23.

Gold, A Misuse Of Money

Envying big houses, limousines, gold watches, fine fashions and first class travel inevitably leads to debts, abusing the giving of God’s people and fatal financial pressures. 1 Timothy 6, 6-10.

Best Of All – Don’t Fall!

  • Be aware of the deceitfulness of your own heart, Jeremiah 17.9
  • Fix your eyes on Jesus, Heb. 12.2
  • Humble yourself before God, lest Satan humbles you, 1 Peter 5,5-6
  • Stay close to God, Job 33.14

People say, “There but for the grace of God go I.” There is a grace from God, so be sure to take full advantage. 2 Timothy 2.1. Have a friend to talk to, one who is honest with you. Get him or her to ask you these following seven questions often ~

The Questions Of Integrity

  1. Have you been with a woman (or a man) anywhere in the past week that might be seen as compromising?
  2. Have any of your financial dealings lacked integrity?
  3. Have you exposed yourself to any sexually explicit material?
  4. Have you spent adequate time in study and prayer?
  5. Have you given priority time to your family?
  6. Have you fulfilled the mandates of your calling?
  7. Have you just lied to God, me or yourself?

Blessed Or Stressed?

After Satan the next great enemy of the leader is himself, for example Elijah. By 1 Kings 19 he has stopped the rain to bring economic ruin to the nation, raised a dead child, called down fire from heaven, slain 400 false prophets, returned the rain and ran faster than a chariot. What a man! But now when Jezebel threatens him, all of Elijah’s emotional energy is exhausted. He cannot face one more confrontation or prophetic performance, not one more issue. He cannot even face seeking God again for his word.

Elijah Has Had Enough

He leaves his servant, runs away from the problem and ends up alone in a dry place asking God to take his life. Moses prayed much the same thing, Numbers 11.15, and it can happen to anyone. A leaders own concerns about family, finances, church and future can lead to overload, emotional burn-out and even a breakdown. 1 Kings 19, 3-5.

What Were God’s Answers?

There was no rebuke from God, only mercy and some good food, drink and rest. God’s teases out the unbelief and self pity and leads Elijah into a new encounter with him. 19.5-9. After the wind, shaking and fire God gently whispers to Elijah that he is not finished yet and sends him back the way he came to anoint two new leaders and to find another 7,000 believers! He obeys the Lord and his ministry goes on in power. 2 Kings 1 & 2.

Beating The Burnout

When a spring is stretched too far it has to be melted down and re-made. Just like us if we push ourselves over the limit. Beating the burnout now will save months of being re-made.

How To Guard Heart And Mind

Stress is all to do with hearts which sink under one more pressure, and minds which overload and then cannot make good decisions.

Paul in Philippians 4, 2-9 says that the God of peace and the peace of God will guard your heart and your mind when ~

  • You attend to stressful relationships through humility and repentance.
  • You keep rejoicing in the Lord, as an act of your will.
  • You are gentle, not irritable, because the Lord is near, and there is hope.
  • You are not anxious about anything, but tell God and thank him.
  • You choose to think about what is actually true, not what is threatened.
  • You reflect on positive things not dark negatives.

God promises you a way out of every trial, 1 Cor. 10.13. That may involve dealing with practical issues of managing time, finances and debts, and saying No to some people, projects and papers.

To Close Pray for the World’s Most Unreached Peoples by Name

Taken from the Joshua Project Unreached Peoples List these people have no church and as yet no cell, church or mission has committed themselves to prayer, adoption or church planting among this people.

Qatar

People Name Language Population
Persian (Irani) Farsi, Eastern 65,600
Urdu Speakers Urdu 28,000

 

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