When do we sin? “But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.” (James 1:14) I needed to look the word “drawn” up before I could write this letter to you this morning, we do as we are led by the Holy Spirit, and when we do, we are led to the treasures of God. Yet this verses implication is just the opposite, the word means “to be dragged away,” the inference is the same though, whether it is used for the glory of God or our own temporary downfall, if you will.
Our lusts are just that, ours, as I have stated before, we give far too much due to our adversary when we sin, and I believe it is a good part of the reason why we live in such an enabled society today, the born-again believers stopped taking accountability for their own actions, their “dragging away,” and by blaming Satan for attacks, they felt it best to never use righteous judgment against sinners again. In other words, they sinned, did not want to admit it was entirely their fault, and then stopped placing the blame on others for their own personal sins. They started the “hate the sin, but love the sinner” movement.
One must truly contemplate this verse, which I admit I am not worthy to expound on, for I am quite well versed on being dragged away by my own lusts, but that is the point, they were and are my lusts, how they appear is inconsequential to the subject matter, whether they appear in my life of my own volition and searching, or if they are placed in front of me by the adversary, that is of no consequence, it is what I do with them when they do appear. “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)
The way out is always available, whether or not we accept it is left entirely up to us, God does not force virtue upon any man. These are the pleasures of sin for a season, (Heb. 11:25) and they are called that for just that reason, they are pleasurable to the flesh, the mind finds great satisfaction in that which is not only pleasurable, but also forbidden.
Adam was not tempted, he made a conscience decision to accept the fruit from his wife’s hand, how long he hesitated before he bit into it is the question, for those few moments, if in fact that is what the time frame was, determined the path of the entire human race for thousands of years. To know those thoughts would enable us, in a sense, to know what not to do, to not find it necessary to fight the continuing, ongoing battle with sin, to obey in all humility and with fervent love our Lord simply because He is. Adam was dragged away by himself, by his own free will, Satan initiated the conversation, but he was not beguiled, he was not forced to eat, he alone was accountable for his actions.
I am not sure that you have noticed this, but it made no difference to God that Eve used the excuse of being tempted, she was still held accountable for her actions, no one to blame but ourselves my friends. Satan is more powerful than we can possibly imagine, but unless he is allowed to, unless he asks permission first, (Luke 22:31) he can do absolutely nothing to the born-again believer, save perhaps work within the pre-set rules of temptation that have been set upon him. The lost in this area are for a different letter.
We are dragged away by ourselves; the Lord God does not teach any man about Himself by leading us first into sin, (Matt. 6:13) Satan can only tempt, entice, and I personally believe that he spends little time on those who are not faithfully committed to submitting to the will of the Holy Spirit in every area of their lives, he does not bother with the “once a week Christian.” But those seem to be the ones that feel a need to blame him the most when they do fall, and that does not bother him one bit, it continues the journey of man upon the path of enablement.
“The serpent beguile me.” “And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.” (Gen. 3:12) Sound familiar? “It’s not my fault, society is against me, I can’t get a break, I didn’t get the same advantages as others did, the man is holding me down, it’s the liberal’s fault, it’s the conservative’s fault. The devil made me do it.”
“With her much fair speech she caused him to yield, with the flattering of her lips she forced him.” (Prov. 7:21)
Not one single person, out of all the hundreds of billions of souls that have existed, not one single person is going to be able to blame anyone else for their sins they have committed against the Lamb of God, not one excuse is going to be viable. There is a very old and aptly put secular statement that fits quite well here, “Sometimes it is better to want something than it is to have it.” The only question left to pose is this, since indeed we will sin again, many times before we stand before our Creator, how far will you drag yourself away before you come to your senses, how long will you remain staring at the pig trough as the prodigal son did (Luke 15:16) before you return in humility. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9) I would say, the sooner, the better.