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Text Sermons : J.R. Miller : May 8. Enduring Temptation

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"Lead us not into temptation — but deliver us from evil." Matthew 6:11

It is impossible to live in this world — and escape temptation. In olden times, Catholic monks fled away from active life and from human companionships, hoping thus to evade enticement to evil. But they were not at all successful; for wherever they went they carried in their own hearts a fountain of corruption, and were thus perpetually exposed to temptation.

The only door of escape from all temptation — is the door that leads into Heaven! We grieve over our Christian friends whom the Lord calls away; but do we ever think that we have far more reason for concern, possibly for grief — over those who live and have to battle with sin in this world? Those who have gone to Heaven, in the victorious release of Christian faith, are forever secure; but those yet in the sore battle, are still in peril.

This petition is a prayer that we may never be called needlessly to meet temptation. Sometimes God wants us to be tried, because we can grow strong only through victory. We have a word of Scripture which says: "Blessed is the man who endures temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life." Yet we ought never ourselves to seek any way of life — in which we shall have to be needlessly exposed to the peril of conflict with sin. Temptation is too terrible an experience, fraught with too much danger — to be sought by us, or ever encountered — except when God leads us in the path on which it lies. We must never rush unbidden or unsent into any spiritual danger. There are no promises for presumption. "It is written," said the Master, "You shall not tempt the Lord your God." When God sends us into danger, we are under His protection; when we go where He does not send us, we go unsheltered.

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