Proverbs 20:27 (NIV) “The Lord looks deep inside people and searches through their thoughts.”
In Proverbs 20, Solomon writes about the sin that can easily trip us up: drunkenness, laziness, dishonesty, gossip, and inappropriate anger. He also tells us that the Lord has given us ears to hear and eyes to see.
Our battle is not the sin itself. Sure, it is difficult to stop something once it becomes a habit. But the real battle is in our thoughts and the playing field there. If I don’t control my thoughts and make them obedient to Christ, I can easily get tripped up and do those things I know aren’t pleasing to God.
This is where learning the word of God is so important. Once I know what pleases God through careful study of His word, I must strive to control my thoughts. Thoughts really do run our lives. This could lead to problems if my thoughts aren’t aligned with God’s word.
What about temptation? Have you ever found yourself saying “I easily fall into temptation” or “the temptation was just too much to handle.” Temptation itself is not a sin; giving in to temptation is. God always gives us a way out. His word promises that in 1 Corinthians 10:13.
“No test or temptation that comes your way is beyond the course of what others have had to face. All you need to remember is that God will never let you down; he’ll never let you be pushed past your limit; he’ll always be there to help you come through it.” (MSG)
We were all born with a sin nature. When we rely on God and His mighty power to help us stand strong, we draw even closer to Christ and further away sin.
Related reading: Ephesians 6:10 – 13; Hebrews 12:1; 2 Corinthians 12:9; James 1:12