Welcome to the Onward Christian Soldiers Discipleship Class. I am Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society and pastor of Gospel Light House of Prayer International. The purpose of this time together is to teach young believers everything they need to know about their faith in Jesus Christ and provide them with the knowledge they need to live victorious Christian lives.
Our key Bible verse is 1 Corinthians 10:13:
There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.
— PRAYER —
Our lesson today is titled “How to Overcome Temptation, Part 63”
In this section of our Onward Christian Soldiers discipleship class, we are going to continue looking at specific temptations that are, as the Bible says, “common to man.” We are looking at what the Bible says about these sins so we can be aware of its dangers and so that we can hide Scripture in our hearts to use when we are tempted.
The sin that we are going to continue looking at today is the sin of “lust.” This is the third sin in a list of 12 temptations that comes from two sources — one ancient and one modern. The first source is a list that was developed by monks in the early church called “the seven deadly sins” or the “cardinal sins.” The second source is a Barna survey from 2011 which tracked the top temptations Americans admitted to struggling with.
Today, we will begin looking at 1 Peter 2:9-12. (Remember, the text of this lesson is made available online after each class, so you can go to our website GLHOPI.com, click the “Onward Christian Soldiers” banner on the home page, and begin to learn these verses by heart throughout the week.)
1 Peter 2:9-12
9 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light;
10 Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.
11 Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul;
12 Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.
John Walvoord & Roy Zuck said, “Peter closed this portion of his letter of encouragement with a moving exhortation for his readers to practice holiness. He reminded them that, in contrast with the disobedient who are destined for destruction, they were a chosen people. Peter again echoed the Old Testament, specifically Isaiah 43:20. “Chosen people,” which used to apply only to Israel, was now used of both Jewish and Gentile believers. The responsibility once solely trusted to the nation of Israel has now, during this Age of Grace, been given to the church. “
In this passage, we find several reasons why we ought to abstain from fleshly lusts. The first reason is because abstaining from lust is proof that we are changed people, that we are truly a part of the “chosen generation, the royal priesthood, the holy nation.” While a profession of faith is necessary, it is our actions that demonstrate to the world that we are a peculiar people.
Second, our abstaining from fleshly lusts “shows forth the praises of him who hath called us out of darkness into his marvellous light.”
John Walvoord & Roy Zuck said, “Peter warmly addressed his readers as dear friends or better, “beloved”. Those who are loved by God are exhorted to live as aliens “those who live in a place that is not their home,” used figuratively of Christians, whose real home is in heaven and strangers in the world . Just as their Christian values and beliefs are rejected by the world, so they are to live apart from the immorality and sinful desires that surround them. Abstain is literally “hold oneself constantly back from.” Christians are to resist the sinward pull of those worldly desires which war against their spiritual lives. In this real spiritual battle a demonic strategy is to attack believers at their weakest points.”
The term “shew forth” comes from a Greek word that means to “proclaim.” It is “one who speaks and acts in place of one who has sent him, making a complete proclamation.” The term can also mean “to advertise.” In other words, our lives ought to be an advertisement for Jesus Christ who has called us from darkness to light.
But, what specifically are we advertising? The Bible says we are to show forth his “praises.” The Greek word translated as “praises” means “virtue, moral goodness, or moral excellence.” Our society has lost its moral bearings, especially when it comes to lust and sexual sin. The lifestyle of the Christian ought to call attention to God’s moral standards. We are advertising a different, better lifestyle than that which the world has to offer. One commentator wrote, “Since we have ‘Christ in us the hope of glory,’ they should see Him in and through our attitudes, actions, and conversation. Each citizen of heaven is a living ‘advertisement’ for the excellencies or virtues of God and the promises and blessings He bestows on believers now and throughout eternity. Our lives should radiate His ‘marvelous light’ which now even indwells us as the Spirit of Christ.”
Abstaining from fleshly lust is not only good for us spiritually, it is a vital part of maintaining a good testimony in the world and helping others see why they should choose to follow Jesus as well.
If you struggle with lust or any sin, take this passage to heart and begin to use it the next time you face that temptation.
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
If you do not know Jesus Christ as your Saviour, John 3:16 states, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
The Bible also says in Romans 10:9 and 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved…. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and I want to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! I want to congratulate you on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
Until next time, May the Lord Bless You!