Donna Martelli is a Christian freelance writer who is passionate about sharing the wealth of knowledge that the Lord has given her in her 30+ years of loving and serving Him. She has written three books, course manuals, book summaries, blogs, articles, and devotionals for many ministries, including but not limited to John 3:16 Ministries, Inc., Pastor Duke Tabor, and Faithwriters. Donna writes out of her own varied life experiences, including those of dancer, instructor, file clerk, business owner, real estate salesperson, wife and mother. Her goal in writing is to glorify God and to bless and help people reach their full potential in this life. She lives in Indianapolis, Indiana, is married with five children and 12 grandchildren.
“Let no man say when he is tempted, ‘I am tempted by God,’ for God cannot be tempted with evil; neither does He tempt anyone. But each man is tempted when he is drawn away by his own lust and enticed. Then, when lust has conceived, it brings forth sin; and when sin is finished, it brings forth death.” (James 1:13-15 MEV}
Sin blinds. A decision to sin blinds. Temptation is not sin. I have the power to rebuke it and go on, assuming I belong to Jesus and am filled with His Spirit.
“I say then, walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.” (Galatians 5:16 MEV)
God is not tempting me to sin. Temptation comes from my desire (lust}. Walking in the Spirit means that I do not yield to that lust. It is the Holy Spirit in me Who gives me the power to resist that temptation. No problem: my walk with the Lord continues.
But, allowing desire (lust) to conceive means that I entertain it in my mind and allow it to grow. I think about it over and over and make mental scenarios. At this juncture, the blindness begins. I am unable to see how gross my sin is to the Lord. I even think it is not sin because I haven’t “done” anything. Jesus said that to sin in the heart is to sin. It has consequences, the main one being the acceptance of darkness into my mind and spirit. Satan has no power or authority over me until I give it to him. Sin in my mind and heart gives the devil a place in my life. It permits him to influence me. I might as well say to him, “come on in; my heart is open to you and your ways.” If allowed to continue, I will commit the sin that I have entertained in my mind. The end of living in sin is death. Yes, I am forgiven, but could I ever find a place of repentance in my heart? I don’t know. Will I sell my birthright for a bowl of soup?
In the meantime, life goes on with sin only conceived in my mind. On the surface, things look pretty much the same. But, since there is no anointing without purity of heart, there is no joy, no strength, no power or authority. I am confused, and I can’t hear the voice of my Shephard. I try to do the things that I have always done by His Spirit, and I can’t. But I still try, and in so doing, I exhaust myself. Most of all, I miss Jesus! He’s been my close companion for so long. His hand stretches out to me, but it is this thing in my heart that separates me from Him. I am hurting! I want out! Help, Lord!
“Not my will, but Thine be done.” When my flesh is out of line, there is only one answer. There is only one thing that my flesh will respond to: crucifixion. It is painful to say no to that temptation, but it is worth it. The anointing is worth everything. His Presence is all that I need. The way is straight and narrow, and you and I must stay on it. Satan wants to destroy us, and he will stop at nothing. He perverts everything God has made for us to enjoy, and he uses our desires against us.
God is for us and not against us. He has given us everything that we need to walk in victory. If we truly submit ourselves to Him and resist the devil, the devil will flee from us.
“Therefore submit yourselves to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” (James 4:7 MEV)
Every good and perfect gift comes from God. He loves us! Jesus won the victory. He sent His Holy Spirit to equip us for anything we must accomplish in this life. Let us open our hearts wide and allow Jesus Christ to enter and permeate every part. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no one comes to the Father except through Him. Whatever it is, wherever we are, He is the only answer!
(I wrote this in 1994. Look for an update soon.)