Post details: Self-defense = temptation of "if you really are ..."


Permalink 12:21:31 pm, Categories: By Trent, GraceHead counseling, 346 words   English (US)

Self-defense = temptation of "if you really are ..."

I was listening to a sermon the other day, and part of it seemed authentically true - a fine revelation to me ... though at the time I did not know how to apply it in my life. In less than a week, I started to realize what it might mean for me in practice.

Defending what is true ... imperative or temptation?

Jesus was tempted to turn rocks into bread, but there really is no sin in that? No law says "thou shalt not make bread from stones" ... so that Jesus would not sin in doing so, right? So wherein was the temptation?

It reads, "If you really are the son of God, turn the stones into bread ..."
The temptation is in the first part ... "If you really are ..."

We are often tempted toward self-preservation or to prove to others what or who we are. Even from an early age, I don't remember specifics, but the feeling often of proving yourself worthy is a natural part of growing up ... like when a bully stands there daring you ... to cross the line. And it calls forth courage to bow-up to the threats ... etc. So we learn to react to such challenges or suffer consequences.

This is Jesus' temptation ... "if you really are ..." And so it is our temptation these days. What will we do when asked to prove ourselves to a scoffer? Will we deliver what they ask?
Or will we lean on the Lord and let Him deliver us instead?

In an age of truth-defenders ... are there any Christ-like people that would have the truth defend them rather than the other way around?

This is not a call to be silent, and let things slide. This is a call to be mindful of the ways of the enemy to draw us offsides into vain disputes. We can avoid them ... and scoffers cannot. So, unless lead by the Spirit otherwise, I would expect a spirit-filled Christian to be more about the business of turning their other cheeks than I would expect them to be given to self-preservation and self-defense.

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Comment from: lenbenhear [Member] ·
Yes. Being 'overly defensive' of either ourselves (or friends, ... especially when it is *an abused and maligned* friend) is a difficult matter to deal with in the midst of a battle, ... especially when it is perceived as being *a spiritual* battle. ... I think I need to be more careful and watchful as to when *to speak up* ... and when to be silent and pray.

Thanks for the insights, Trent.
Permalink 08/25/07 @ 06:13
Comment from: Timothy [Member] ·
Amen again Brother...most excellent teaching, of which, also speaks the truth directly to my heart, reminding me of those things the Lord has also spoken to me many times, according to how I should be serving Him... and by what confidence (total trust in Him and not in myself) I stand and by what means I am always to be an example, even to the scoffers...

I am only to trust in Him and obey, no more no less... He is the head, I am but part of His body doing ONLY that which the Lord has called of me.

Even to the resisting of satan the Lord has said to turn to Him first, not taking it upon myself, but taking it to the Lord first. For He goes before me and is always with me and in me, even forever remaining my Rearguard.

How much arrogance must I have in myself thinking I can take up any battle by my own knowledge and strength when I am nothing without Him, neither can I do anything apart from Him.
Those who seek the Lord without ceasing are the very same ones who overcome...for their strength is in the Lord!
Permalink 08/25/07 @ 22:07
Comment from: pam [Visitor]
For me the problem comes when I perceive the spiritual battle to be outward, with another human being. The spiritual battle I am truly to wage is inward. We are to contend for the truth but never for self. We also don't need to be contenous when seeking to clarify the truth which is what I believe those serious about faith in Christ are doing when they disagree. It seems that we learn more through conflict than agreement and learning more about Jesus is what it is all about.

Permalink 08/26/07 @ 00:11

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