“For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.” (Romans 6:14)
Temptations are not sins, when we place ourselves in a position to where that temptation will assuredly cross our path, it becomes the beginning of sin. The happily married man, after an initial chance meeting with an attractive woman on his way to work, who falls into temptation will place himself in that same location, attempting to have another “chance meeting.” “Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.” (James 1:15)
You may envision these and many other temptations as a cage whose door is always open to you, and you are the only one that can open and close that door, sin is no longer the master of the life of the born-again believer, you can walk into that cage of your own free will at any time, but only you can close the door behind you and enjoy for a season the pleasures of sin. (Heb. 11:25) The decision by you to see the temptation and to take the way out offered by the Lord many times does not mean that something else, something holy and righteous is offered, it means you shutting that cage door and not walking into it.
Here is how we keep our bodies under subjection, the Lord does not do this for us, it is only by our free will that we can shut that door, and there should only be one reason to do so, that the name of God would not be dishonored by us. “Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.” (James 1:27)
The world is covered in sin, there is not one place on the planet that has been spared. We are no longer of this world, but we must still live in it. No one can walk in the rain and not get wet. To those who profess Jesus Christ openly and without shame or embarrassment Satan has laid these traps, he can influence the wicked towards his desired goal, to see the name of God besmirched, and he does so by leading them towards those individuals who openly serve Christ and using them to attempt to get us to sin. But rarely is he needed, for many who serve Christ have neglected the truth of this statement, “Sometimes its better to want something than it is to have it.”
We are drawn away by our lust, lust that many times begins with the eyes, “The lust of the eyes,” many times by our unfettered desires and thoughts of the mind, “The lust of the flesh,” but even at times by a supposed need for self-recognition, “The pride of life.” That man who puts himself in places where he is fairly sure he will meet that woman again employs all three of these opportunities to sin. His eyes have beheld what he sees as desirous, his flesh has been aroused by his mind, and his pride states that she also will be desirous of him. He has decided to walk into that open cage and close the door behind him.
We do not need Satan to help us with this, we are quite capable of sinning without any intervention from him, and I truly believe that most who claim Jesus Christ as Lord have never even been noticed by him, but they will attempt to use him as their scapegoat, as their excuse for disobeying the Lord. There is pleasure in sin, all those on the planet are aware of this truth, but only those who serve the Lord Jesus Christ feel the sting of sin as an offense to God, to those who do not know Him as Lord, almost any opportunity to sin is taken. And the reason? “And behold joy and gladness, slaying oxen, and killing sheep, eating flesh, and drinking wine: let us eat and drink; for to morrow we shall die.” (Isaiah 22:13)
We who serve Christ in love do not give any thought to the rewards we may lose if we live in unrepented of sin, we do not care what others think of us, what we hear in our hearts is David saying, “Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest.” (Psalm 51:4) Close that cage door before you step into it, not after you have walked in, always remember, that door has no lock.