Spiritual Victory Over Temptation Becoming a Follower of Jesus - Session November 2012

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1 Spiritual Victory Over Temptation Becoming a Follower of Jesus - Session November 2012 Opening Prayer (5 min): In your groups, pray sentence prayers for tonight s training. Ask the Holy Spirit to meet each person tonight and to give them insight to have Spiritual Victory over temptation. Introduction: Soon after a new believer begins to walk with Jesus he or she begins to realize that there is a very real enemy that is trying to tempt them to sin, quit, give up or compromise. This enemy is called Satan. He is a fallen angel and he is powerful and extremely deceptive. But God has given each new believer the weapons and tools to conquer this enemy and overcome each and every temptation. As we are becoming more than Believers and becoming Followers of Jesus it is imperative that we learn how to deal decisively with temptation and this very real enemy. Key Memory Verse: Victory Over Temptation I Corinthians 10:13 (NIV) No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. Exercise 1 (1 min): Identify tonight s group facilitator the person who will travel the furthest distance at Thanksgiving. Exercise 2 (20 min): Beginning with the person to the left of the group facilitator, one by one go around the group and see how many of the ten Bible verses we have been learning together during this training each person can recite from memory. (Help one another when they get stuck!) Afterward, share some of the strategies you are using to memorize scripture. Objective: This Coming Week s Reading: Luke The objective of this lesson is to teach the Follower of Jesus how to conquer and defeat Satan and the temptations that he will try to use to get them to sin.

2 Key Definitions or Concepts: Sin -- John Wesley developed a good operating definition of sin that God holds us responsible for before Him. Sin = a willful transgression of a known law of God. You know it is wrong. You choose to do it anyway. That is the sin that Jesus can help us to overcome. (1 John 3:4-6) Temptation -- an attempt by Satan to get you to gratify a God-given desire in an illegitimate way outside God s will. Temptation involves some kind of attraction or it is not a temptation. Temptation is not sin. Yielding to temptation is sin. Jesus Christ is the expert on the subject of temptation. The Bible tells us He was tempted like all of us. Hebrews 4:15 (NIV) For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have One (Jesus) who has been tempted in every way, just as we are yet he did not sin. Jesus was tempted in every way that humans are tempted. He was tempted harder than any of us. He was tempted longer than any of us. He was tempted in areas you ve never been tempted. Yet, with the same weapons available to us, the Holy Spirit and the Word of God, Jesus resisted temptation. He never gave in. He never sinned! He understands and He is more than ready to help us win every battle with temptation. Hebrews 2: (NIV) Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death that is, the devil 15 and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death. 16 For surely it is not angels he helps, but Abraham s descendants. 17 For this reason he had to be made like them,[a] fully human in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. 18 Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted. Key Points To Remember: 1. Satan is a very real enemy of the Christian. I Peter 5:8-9 (NIV) 8 Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 9 Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings.

3 Since the Garden of Eden, Satan has been trying to entice men and women away from God. He lies to us and his goal is to get us to doubt God, disobey God and disown God. He wants to separate us from the love, protection and care of our Heavenly Father. Satan wants to trick, trap and ensnare us. While Satan is a formidable foe he is not: omnipotent (all powerful like God is) omniscient (all knowing like God is) omnipresent (everywhere like God is) a mind reader (like God is) aware of the future (like God is) undefeated (like God is) as we saw in Hebrews 2:14 he was defeated and rendered powerless at the cross of Jesus unbeatable (like God is) in fact God has given every believer the power and the authority to defeat Satan in daily battle. And our Commander-in-Chief expects us to win! Luke 10:19 (NIV) I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. Romans 16:20 (NIV) The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet Our Great God the Lord Jesus has defeated Satan at the cross and He wants to help us defeat Satan in our everyday lives. We can be victorious over him in every temptation. We can win because Jesus has already WON! 2. Satan is no match for An All-Powerful Jesus. We have daily victory in Jesus who has already defeated Satan. Jesus was an Overcomer in the daily temptations He faced and He was more than a conqueror on the cross. Jesus gives us personal victory in our lives! I Corinthians 15:57 (NIV) But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. II Corinthians 2:14 But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ. I John 4:4 Greater is He (The Holy Spirit of Jesus) who is in you than he who is in the world (Satan). 3. God has given us powerful weapons to defeat Satan. A. God has given us His armor Ephesians 6:10-18 (NIV)

4 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord s people. B. God has given us spiritual weapons, used to capture people s thoughts. II Corinthians 10:3-5 (NIV) For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. 4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. 5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. Some of those weapons include: The Word of God The Holy Spirit The Blood of Jesus Collective Witness of the Church Prayer and Fasting Our Testimony & Life of Integrity and there are others we will learn about later. 4. God expects His children to learn how to be victorious over Satan. Jesus wants us to be more than conquerors He wants us to be overcomers! Romans 8:37 (KJV) In all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. 1 John 2:13-14 (NIV) I am writing to you, fathers, because you know Him who is from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one. I write to you, dear children, because you know the Father. I write to you, fathers, because you know Him who is from the beginning. I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God lives in you, and you have overcome the evil one.

5 1 John 4:4 You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world. 1 John 5:4-5 (NIV) For everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God. Revelation 2:7 (NIV) Whoever has ears, let him them hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God. 5. We don t have to sin or give in to temptation. I John 2:1 (NIV) My little children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. And if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father Jesus Christ, the Righteous One; I John 3:6-9 (NIV) 6 No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him. 7 Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. The one who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. 8 The one who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil s work. 9 No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God. I John 5:18 (NIV) We know that anyone born of God does not continue to sin; the One who was born of God keeps them safe, and the evil one cannot harm them. We may sin occasionally but it is not the norm for the Follower of Jesus. We are not just sinners saved by grace who can t help sinning thousands of times a day in word, thought and deed. We are God s holy saints who are abiding in Jesus and His Holy Word is abiding in us. His Word can keep us from continuing to sin. We may occasionally stumble and sin, but we don t have to or want to! Sinning is not our normal condition. We can be spiritual over-comers every day in Jesus and walk in spiritual victory. We can, by the help of the Holy Spirit say NO to temptation, just like Jesus did. We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us and that means saying NO to temptation as well. We are becoming like Jesus and we don t have to keep on sinning. Jesus said Go and sin no more! (John 8:11) Do you think Jesus meant this? Yes He did. Jesus would never give someone a command if

6 it was impossible to do. What Jesus commands us to do He will empower us to do. Believe and obey Him. Call out to Him for help when you are tempted! 6. If you do give in to temptation and sin, get up and call on your Defense Attorney. Confess your sin to God and let Him cover you with a fresh embrace of His forgiveness and grace and go on to victory as a wiser Follower of Christ! I John 2:1 (NIV) My little children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. And if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father Jesus Christ, the Righteous One; I John 1:9 (NIV) If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 7. How to Overcome any Temptation A. Overcome temptation ahead of time by prayer Luke 22:40 (NIV) On reaching the place, he [Jesus] said to them, "Pray that you will not fall into temptation." Matthew 6:13 (NIV) And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. B. Overcome temptation by putting on the full armor of God (see Ephesians 6:10-18) C. Overcome temptation by resisting Satan James 4:7 (NIV) Resist the devil and he will flee from you. D. Overcome temptation by the blood of Jesus Revelation 12:11 (NIV) "And they triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony Plead the Blood of Jesus in prayer when you are tempted it will help you win! E. Overcome temptation by memorizing God s word. Psalm 119:11 (NIV)

7 I have hidden your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you. G. Overcome temptation through practicing spiritual accountability. James 5:16 (NIV) Therefore, confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. H. Overcome temptation through the weapon of praising God! See Psalm 149 Remember God s Truth When You re Tempted: James 1:12-15 (NIV) 12 Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him. 13 When tempted, no one should say, God is tempting me. For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14 but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. 15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full- grown, gives birth to death. II Peter 2:9 (NIV) the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials and to hold the unrighteous for punishment on the day of judgment. II Corinthians 2:10-11(NIV) 10 Anyone you forgive, I also forgive. And what I have forgiven if there was anything to forgive I have forgiven in the sight of Christ for your sake, 11 in order that Satan might not outwit us. For we are not unaware of his schemes. Overcoming Temptation Illustration (5 min) Exercise 3 Table Discussion (15 min): Temptation will come in every Christian s life and it will look different for every person. Sometimes we characterize temptations as the big sins drinking, sex outside of marriage, drugs, gambling, murder, and so on. But temptation to sin comes in all shapes and sizes. It can look like gossip, maligning someone s character, watching inappropriate movies and television shows, lust, etc. In the sports world, we often hear the saying the best defense is a great offense. Think about where your greatest temptation to sin is. From what you ve learned in this week s lesson, (a) what strategies/methods can you pre-plan to keep from sinning in that area and (b) what

8 immediate steps can you take should you find yourself having sinned? Share your strategies with your table group. Exercise 4 - Exercise (10 min): Think of someone in your life who is a fairly new Christian. What would you tell them about temptation to sin and strategies/methods to use to overcome it? On flipchart paper, write down the strategies/methods your table group identifies and post them on the wall. Prayer Around Tables (15 min): Allow people who often do not have a chance to pray around the table to go first tonight. This is an opportunity for everyone to stretch. For those who are reluctant to pray out loud, it is an opportunity to trust the Holy Spirit to help you express what is on your heart. For those who often lead in prayer, it is an opportunity to rely on the Holy Spirit to give you a quiet heart and patience while others collect their thoughts and then pray. Tonight, give special prayerful attention to people who do not yet know Jesus.

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