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Mental temptation is what keeps most people in bondage and depression. It occurs when thoughts come to your mind that are contrary to the Word of God, like thoughts of revenge, bitterness, or evil.

The enemy would like to bring wrong thoughts to you constantly. If you let them, those thoughts can stay on your mind all of the time, trying to bombard you with temptation.

But the book of Isaiah says that Jesus paid the price to set you free from mental temptation and depression! Isaiah 53 says:
Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.
(Isa. 53:4-5)
Wrong thoughts will come, but they don't have to dominate our thinking. It is not a sin to get a bad thought, but it is a sin when you take the bad thought and meditate on it or act it out.

You can see that the battle we face takes place in our minds.

The enemy will attack weak-minded people who have no foundation in God's Word. We don't have to live under thoughts that tempt us constantly. Second Timothy 1:7 says, "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind."

We Can Have A Strong Mind
Although there are times our minds want to think on things of the world, the Bible has given us an answer. According to Philippians 4, the spirit wants to think on good things:
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.
(Phil. 4:8-9)
Thank God! He has made a way that our spirits can dominate our thinking!

How Do Wrong Thoughts Come?
Let's look at 2 Corinthians 11:3, "But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtlety, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ."

The Amplified Bible says the serpent beguiled Eve through her mind with his cunning trickery. The enemy will bring thoughts to us in a subtle and cunning way. He does this so we don't realize we are actually thinking on thoughts that originate from him.

Because we live in the world, our minds are subject to corruption. We see or hear things all of the time that may entice us to go the world's way. Our minds can be tempted and drawn away from whole-hearted devotion to Christ.

The fight we face will go on in our minds because that is the only way the devil can get to us. If we consider his thoughts too long, they will cause us to get out of faith and into fear about the situation we are facing.

Satan's only tactic to cause us to stumble is his mind games. Second Corinthians 2:11 says, "Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices." The word "devices" in this scripture means "mind games."

Paul is saying that we need to make sure we are not ignorant of the mind games that the devil will use against us. We need to be sure we don't allow the devil to take advantage of us. His goal is to give us a messed up perception of the power of God's Word.

If you entertain the mind games of the enemy, then the power of God will be shut off. The Bible says to resist the mind games so you can be ready for anything that comes your way (James 4:7).

We need to be alert and ready so the power of God can work through us.

Enduring Temptation
The Bible gives us further encouragement regarding temptation in the book of James:
Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.

Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.

Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death. Do not err, my beloved brethren. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.
(James 1:12-17)
If you overcome temptation, we see in James that you will get a special crown just for being an overcomer. These scriptures also indicate that God is not the one tempting us with evil. That is the enemy's job.

The enemy baits people to sin. But Jesus gave us the authority to resist the devil so we don't have to bow down to the pressures of temptation. We are free from the sins that have tempted us in the past.

James goes on to say that God is the one who brings us good gifts! We know God doesn't tempt us because He is good and He is a giver! Romans 6:11 says, "Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord."

Notice Colossians 3:1-2, "If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth."

We have to constantly put our flesh under, resist temptation, and think on things from heaven. You can constantly put your mind on things above by seeking God.

If you can do this, you will be an explosion of power just waiting to do something for God!

Faith Family Church
All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author Biography

Michael Cameneti
Web site: Faith Family Church
Pastors Mike and Barb Cameneti are the founding and lead pastors of Faith Family Church. What began as a small basement Bible study in 1988, has flourished into a multi-faceted ministry reaching the world and helping people establish and grow in their relationship with God.

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