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 80”
In this section of our Onward Christian Soldiers discipleship class, we are 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 looking at today is the sin of “sloth.” This is the fourth 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 be looking at Proverbs 15:19. (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.)
The way of the slothful man is as an hedge of thorns: but the way of the righteous is made plain.
This verse speaks to the difference in the attitude of a slothful person and a person who is ready and willing to work. When they get up in the morning or embark on any endeavor, they have different mentalities about the way ahead of them. And this mentality plays a large part in how they approach work.
For the slothful or lazy man, the path ahead is full of thorns. Some versions read, “strewn with thorns” or “blocked by thorns.” The slothful person only sees the difficulties, the impediments to success. He uses any roadblock as an excuse to justify lazy behavior. John Gill writes in his commentary, ‘The way of the slothful man is made difficult by his own conduct. In his slothfulness, he implicates and entangles himself in such difficulties that he cannot extricate himself; his way is not passable, at least not very easily. In his own apprehensions, he raises difficulties about doing business, which to him seem insurmountable, and which discourage him from attempting it, it being like breaking through thorns and briers.’ The slothful man has a mentality which says, ‘Difficulty ahead. Don’t go there.’
The righteous man, on the other hand, sees the way before him as plain. The Hebrew word translated as “plain” literally means to raise a highway. The man who has a righteous, non-lazy mentality sees what lies before him as the means of getting from where he is to where he wants to be. He sets a goal and pursues it . He is not intimidated by the challenges that he may face — certainly not to the point that he never attempts anything.
If we are to overcome sloth in our lives, we must deal not just with our actions, but with our atitude — our mentality. We must choose to see what lies ahead of us as a way of opportunity — a way to reach our goals and accomplish what needs to be accomplished.
If you struggle with sloth or laziness, take this passage to heart and begin to use it the next time you face that temptation.
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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!