“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.” (1 Cor. 10:13)
We who are born-again in this age of grace are akin in type to Adam and Eve, and to those who were given the law of God through Moses in this area of temptation, in respect to it but not by He who has set those commandments before us. The fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was not placed in the garden of Eden as a means towards temptation no more than the law given to the children of Israel was, it is Satan who set before mankind in every age the knowledge of nothing more than free will, the free will that God has given every person, the ability to choose for ourselves if we will obey or not.
There was no commandment given towards the tree of life in the garden, yet as far as we know our first parents did not attempt to eat of it, and so logically, as much as we can think logically about Spiritual matters, we can presume that they gave no thought to the fruit that was forbidden to them, until Satan came on the scene. Adam and Eve were created in a state of perfection in as much as they had no sin when they were created, the same as all the angels of God, including Lucifer. “And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.” (Gen. 1:31)
The law was given to man for a specific reason, as a way to obey God so that He would be glorified, to break even one of the laws was to break them all, (James 2:10) We are tempted to disobey for self-centered reasons. It was not necessary then, nor is it necessary now for Satan and those who fell with him to go around to every single person and place before them a singular, personally designed temptation, that was accomplished in the garden when it was revealed to our first parents the only necessary construct for disobedience, the fact that we have a choice, we have the ability that comes with free will to obey or disobey.
“Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.” (Romans 3:20)
The law, as it were, was given first in the garden, “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” (Gen. 2:17) Then at Mount Sinai, and then, shown in its totality by the Lord Jesus Christ for this age of grace, “If ye love me, keep my commandments.” (John 14:15)
Satan’s goal towards man has never change, attempt to show us that we have the free will to obey or disobey, nothing more. His hatred of the Most High is easily seen in this one fact, the free will that both he and all the fallen angels have, that all men ever born have is not in all reality complete and total unmitigated free will, for God alone is Sovereign, He alone is self-sustaining, He alone rules in all reality.
To serve God means to obey God, to go completely against the free will that we have been given, and which has been corrupted in its efforts to serve the Almighty in holy reverence by the singular act of Adam in the garden to harken to the voice of his wife. For those who are chosen by God to be eternally with Him for all eternity, Satan has no power over unless it is granted to Him by the Lord, over the wicked he has the power of death (Heb. 2:14) but permission must be asked if he desires to see those that serve Christ touched, as it were, by him.
It is the action of Eve that we learn from here, she was deceived, coerced if you like, and disobeyed God in that one command, yet even in that deception she was cursed by the Lord.
The deceptions, the temptations, the traps as I have been known to call them are literally everywhere, they are as landmines laid by the enemy, some easily discerned, some not so visible. There is no need, or very little indeed for Satan or any fallen angel to follow around any child of God, the traps have been laid and are only modified as mankind evolves in his thinking and inventions. “So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.” (Romans 14:12)
If you have understood the construct of this poorly written letter then you understand fully that not one single excuse for any sin you have ever committed will be accepted by the Lord on your day of accounting, the deception of Eve and the punishment upon her stand as truth to this statement. Being deceived is not a viable excuse. The only way that we could continue in life without sin is if we did not have free will, or if there were never any temptations, and that is not going to happen. The Lord will protect His children from evil, the Scriptures are full of this promise, but He does not protect us from temptation, He offers us in each of them a way out, no more.
Free will cannot exist if there is no choice to be had, but neither the direct nor indirect actions of Satan can be used as an excuse for when we fall into that temptation, Satan can make no child of God do anything. Over the wicked yes, he has power, this truth is offered to us in the Word of God, but over we who have been saved by the grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ he can offer no more than the knowledge that he offered to our first parents, you have the ability to choose. As such, we have no excuse that the Lord will hear, we are accountable for our actions, both towards the glory of God and against Him.
Hear the words of Joshua, “And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.” (Joshua 24:15)
The choice is yours.