As we continue in our series on the life of Joseph, the challenge before us is to follow God's dream but the reality is sin can trip us up. Our passage today reveals a success story from a spiritual sense.
So how did Joseph deal with temptation?
He recognised clear boundaries. He was successful but for many of us success can lead to pride. When pride comes in, we can blur the boundaries. This blurring reveals our lack of contentment with God. Joseph knew what he was entitled to and what he wasn't. When it comes to temptation , we don't accept the 'except'. Joseph had clear crisp boundaries. He wouldn't take more than what had been granted to him. He recognises sin for what it is. We can have the tendency to water down sin, but Joseph labels it for what it is - wicked - a sin against God. Joseph distinguishes good from evil.
But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil. Hebrews 5:14
Ultimately our sin is against God. Satan seeks to make us think less of sin.
Right thinking led to right action. He refused to sin. He also refused to even be with her. One of Satan's devices is to present the bait, but hide the hook. We need to keep at the greatest distance from sin and from playing with the bait. Joseph didn't have a false confidence about his ability to resist sin. He steered clear of it.
Joseph REPEATEDLY RESISTED...
Temptation can be repetitive. We can become worn down by temptation. But Joseph repeatedly resisted. Joseph shows formidable strength because the Lord is with Him.
Sometimes you have to just run away. We accept the losses to keep our integrity. Maybe sometimes we need to take aggressive and evasive action against sin.
Joseph made the right choices and maintains his integrity before God and before Potiphar. The result, prison. So why resist? Why bother? Because all afflictions suffered by Christians turn to their profit. Spiritually, he is now in a better place. We tend to focus on our physical well-being rather than our spiritual well-being.
Joseph was faithful to the one who appointed him.
Jesus was faithful to the one who appointed him.
Jesus himself suffered when he was tempted
For because he himself has suffered when tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted. Hebrews 2:18
Jesus was tempted in every way - yet he did not sin.
For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.
Christ is faithful as the Son over God's house.
...but Christ is faithful over God's house as a son. And we are his house, if indeed we hold fast our confidence and our boasting in our hope.
Our salvation is grounded in this.
How are you doing with temptation and sin?
Jesus knows and wants to help you.
For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
The following process may help...
ADMIT - Admit you can't do it.
PRAY - Seek the throne of grace. Bring your temptations before God.
TRUST - Trust in truth, in biblical promises.
ACT - Make decisive action based on truth.
THANK - Thank Him.