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Monday, August 22, 2016
At Risk of Falling - Our Daily Bread Ministries daily devotional 22 August Monday
When my friend Elaine was recovering after a bad fall, a hospital worker placed a bright yellow bracelet on her wrist. It read: Fall Risk. That phrase meant: Watch this person carefully. She may be unsteady on her feet. Help her get from place to place.
First Corinthians 10 contains something like a “Fall Risk” warning for believers. With a glance back at his ancestors, Paul noted the human potential to fall into sin. The Israelites complained, worshiped idols, and had immoral relationships. God grew unhappy with them and allowed them to experience consequences for their wrongdoing. However, Paul said, “These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us . . . . So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!” (vv. 11–12).
It’s easy to trick ourselves into believing that we’re done with a particular sort of sin. Even when we’ve struggled through the worst of it—admitting our problem, repenting, and recommitting ourselves to following God’s ways—temptation may come calling. God makes it possible for us to avoid falling back into the same patterns. He does this by providing a way out of the sinful act we’re considering. Our part is to respond to His offer of escape.
Lord, let me see the way of escape You offer when I am tempted. Give me the strength to accept Your help so I can stay faithful to You. I know this is Your desire for me, and I thank You that You are at work in me.
Great blessings are often followed by great temptations.
Paul tells us that the temptation to do evil is common. But God in His goodness has provided a way to escape sin. More often than not it’s best to plan an escape route before we encounter temptation. It is wise to avoid those circumstances where we are most vulnerable to sin.