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Temptation describes the persuading or inducing a person into committing such an act, by manipulation or otherwise of curiosity, desire or fear of loss. Desire, conflict, and self-control; to what extent does desires conflict with other goals? One might ask, how often and successful do people exercise self-control to resist their desires/temptations? Or, do conflict with other goals tend to elicit resistance, with uneven success?

Also, is temptation not the same as sin? This truth is obvious from the Scriptures. In the Lord’s Prayer, we are taught to pray “forgive us our debts” and “lead us not into temptation” (Matt. 6:12-13). They are not the same.

For forty days and forty nights [Jesus] fasted and became very hungry. During that time the devil came and said to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become loaves of bread.’” (Matthew 4:2-3).




The initial step to resist temptation in the moment is to recognize your weaknesses. In addition to your initial step you need to assess your “near occasions of sin.” These “near occasions” are things, people, emotions, or series of events that ultimately lead to the moment of temptation. These “occasions” are to be avoided at all costs. If that means, literally, running in the opposite direction – run. If that means declining an invitation – decline it. Whatever it means for you, be sure to avoid these “occasions of sin.”


According to a 2013 study by Wilhelm Hoffman, people with high self control are happier than those without. The study discovered this is true because the self disciplined subjects were more capable of dealing with goal conflicts. These people spent less time debating whether to indulge in behaviors detrimental to their health, and were able to make positive decisions more easily. Instead, they made informed, rational decisions on a daily basis without feeling overly stressed or upset.


1 Corinthians 9:27

But I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.



While no two people are exactly alike, the temptations confronting each individual are basically the same as have confronted others.

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