Temptation City!!

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Genesis 39:1-21

Poor Joseph. He was literally surrounded by temptation with no where to get away. Talk about tough.

I've found one of the best ways to deal with temptation is to avoid it altogether. I know, for example, that I have a weakness for buying new clothes. But here's the thing, if I don't go to the mall, I don't have any problems controlling my spending. But as soon as I go to the mall "just to look," things can get out of control without much difficulty. So I've learned to not go shopping to fill time or just because. I only go when I really have a purpose to be there.

So did you learn anything from Joseph today? Moving forward what are some things we can do to deal with the various temptations that are sure to present themselves? Tami W.

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13 Comments

Hi Tami.
I like your title for today, (Temptation City!) Yes I think we've all been there, atleast me. I do believe Joseph is a perfect example. No matter how big the temptation, if we see it ahead of time, I think then we should just DON'T GO THERE, that way it would be easier to resist temptation.

I can do all things through Christ who strenghtens me.

Yours in Christ

I think the main thing to remember is that God is with us all the time. If we obey Him, trust Him, love Him, people around us will know it, and He will continue to bless us and those around us - despite the circumstances we find ourselves in.
Thankfully God forgives us when we blow it, and He rewards us when we don't blow it. Sometimes all it is is a sense of peace in terrible times.

On another matter - Haiti. The only way that last man survived this long was definitely God. What a miracle!

Your strategy is a good one - avoid the situation. But, sometimes temptation is right in your face. When that happens, I try to refocus myself. I turn my thoughts to a more positive activity while I change my location (eg. move to a different room in my house, change my activity). Taking myself away from the source of temptation usually works, it is truly a test of will power!

I'm not sure that Joseph was tempted in this passage. From the first account of Poterfers wife asking him to lie with her, he said no. And it appears that he cont saying no and understood who he was, whom he was, and what God had done for him. Which I think is key in understanding how one can avoid or infact not be tempted or moved by situations that often tempt others. No one is above God and no I'm not without temptation however I have found that when I am in Gods Word and allowing His Word to penetrate my heart and surrounding myself with positive things (music, movies, ect) and people, its a lot harder for me to be tempted or controlled by temptation. Considering temptation is the topic today I would also like to add that the first step (in my oppinion) to overcoming temptation is admitting that it is a temptation and praying and using Gods resources to help you. God tells us in His Word that if we humble ourselves, pray, turn from our sin, seek His face then he will heal us.
Thank you Tammi for being used by God and giving us daily bread.

From Joseph today I learned that sometimes you will be tempted even when you resist. A firm "no" with an explanation was not enough for Potiphar's wife to accept that Joseph had integrity. While it isn't in the text, maybe she was just used to getting her way and had not been turned down before.

In 1 Corinthians 10:13 it states "No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it." We will be tempted no matter how we try to avoid it and resist it. The devil knows what will tempt us and where we are strong.

Avoidance is a good method to keep one from being tempted. However, when those things come up that we can't avoid, we must remember that God provides a way of escape and use it. Just because we pray, have faith in the Lord, will not be shaken, we do His work and honor our commitment to Jesus Christ, we too will be tested to ensure we are true believers. We must be like the seed planted on good soil and stand firm on the promises of God. He gave us a Helper for just such occasions, may we heed to the yearning from The Holy Spirit and stand on His mighty word. We need to ensure that we are grounded in the word of God in order to surpass any situations that will come our way.

Janice what you have said is true. God is always with us and sometimes you feel an inner voice telling you, "do not go there". I always pray that when temptation comes my way that I will not open that door but the door to our Lord and Saviour. I find that reading God's Word daily helps me to focus on Him and when the temptation comes in its many forms I can deal with it a little better.

Janice, So happy you mentioned the rescue of the Haitian young man by Jesus. Do you realise though that was rescued and do you realise that people's hearts are hardened that they do not want to acknolwedge this just as they did not acknowledge Jesus while He was on earth. Praise God from whom all blessings flow. He is with us indeed.

I like it Joseph resisted temptation by not allowing himself against God. Gen 39:9 How then can I do this great wickedness and sin against God?

If we draw into a more intimate relationship with God through prayer and filling ourselves with the word, we will be more grieved by sin in our lives and more eager to set our wills against it.

Great comments.Temptations will come ,how we deal with them is another thing. Joseph knew who his God is and indeed when our lives are focus on God and when he is in control of our lives ,even when temptations come because it surely will come,then we can depend on him to show us the way of escape.I read from a Meet With God booklet on temptations and it speaks about the four A that we can use to fight temptations ,Lisa spoke of one, AVOIDANCE.The other is ANTICIPATE, which for me works , i know my own weaknesses and often my temptations are base on the things i am weaker in.I am not completely free but i am trusting in God to help me through and it helps by reading his words.

Thank you for the reminders about facing temptation: Stay close in an intimate relationship with God, filling ourselves with His Word and looking for the way that He's provided to get out.

I have a question I've wondered: How was Joseph able to always rise to a point of leadership, even in prison? He was blessed wherever he went in some way. God's anointing? Personality? Both?
Something else? Wondered what insight you could give me...thanks!

What I learned today is that no matter what others may say or do to us, God will never forsake us.

Avoid temptation and RUN AWAY hehe,
I really loved the verse 22:"BUT (even when he was being defamed or sent to jail) the LORD was with Joseph..."
I think he understood this, and we have to understand it, too

Romans 8:28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

Teresa,

Great question! Yes, God did bless Joseph, but Joseph opened the door for those blessing by his utter and complete trust in God's faithfulness. In Genesis 50:20, Joseph says to his brothers, "And as for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive." This was not a conclusion that Joseph came to in his latter years as he saw how everything had worked out. It had been his whole philosophy of life before, during and after the misfortunes that seemed to follow him. First it was his brothers, then Potiphar's wife and then the forgetful cup bearer. But through it all, Joseph was confident that God had a plan and would be faithful to that plan no matter what circumstances came along.

Instead of becoming angry, bitter or resentful, Joseph had a quiet confidence in God. This allowed God to bless him in the midst of whatever life threw at him. When we fail to have that confidence, it closes the door to God's blessings.

Allen, Biblical Correspondent at Back to the Bible

Thank you Allen! That helps me to clarify my thinking.

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Hi, my name is Tami Weissert, the P4 facilitator and the "voice" behind the blogs. I'm passionate about helping people grow spiritually and actively encourage Bible engagement through conference speaking and writing. I also served as co-host of the Back to the Bible radio program for over 8 years. A little about me. I'm married to Jeff, and we love scuba diving, playing with our 3 dachshunds and going to Husker football games. I also love growing orchids, singing and Diet Pepsi. I hope you'll join in the conversation as we read the Bible and grow together.

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