Every circumstance of life that we face provides us with a decision. In fact, it requires a decision. Will I persevere? Will I move ahead in faith? Will I be obedient to God? Or will I allow temptation to suggest that the easy way out is disobedience and sin? We must constantly refocus our desires from the lure of temptation to the perfect character of God. -Pastor Dave
Open: Describe a time you faced intense temptation: Did you fall into sin or did you resist? Why or why not?
Read: James 1:12-18; Matthew 4; 5:29-30; Romans 13:14; Colossians 3:5
1. If someone asked you, “What’s the most dangerous spiritual responsibility to neglect?” What do you think most people would say (Bible study, prayer, evangelism, worship, etc…)? How would they be correct/wrong? How is dealing with sin and temptation so important to our spiritual journey? In what ways does temptation come up in the midst of trials and seasons of suffering?
2. James uses the same word for trial (vs. 2), test (vs. 12), and temptation (vs. 13). What do you make of this? What makes each of these things different? How can a trial and a temptation be similar? How are they different? What role does our response play in their effect?
3. Where does temptation come from? Describe the process of temptations: Are desires wrong? What makes desires run out of control? How do they become sinful?
4. How can we defeat temptations? How does James refocus us on the character of God (vs. 17)? How does remembering that God is the giver of perfect gifts help us overcome temptations?
5. In your journey right now, what is your greatest temptation? What are some steps you need to take in order to overcome?
Pray: Pray that you would be aware of areas where you can be tempted and that you would have the strength to resist the temptations that are luring and enticing you.
Memorize/Meditate: Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. James 1:16-17 O