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When Lust Hath Conceived (James 1:13-15)

Introductory Thoughts

Sin is not something that man does by accident. It is something that man allows or willingly does based upon an unwillingness to stop any act before it becomes sin. The scripture offers a process for sin: “Every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed” (James 1:14). It appears that temptation in and of itself is not sin, but one’s submission to that temptation is what constitutes sin. The Bible states this truth by saying, “Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin” (James 1:15). It is encouraging to understand the process. Although every man faces temptations and many of these temptations are unavoidable, sin is avoidable. When a man gives in to temptation, he chooses to sin.

Devotional Thoughts

  • (For children): Instead of trusting God and His word (Genesis 2:17), when the Devil tempted Eve, she willingly partook of the forbidden fruit (Genesis 3:1-6; cp. 1 John 2:16). Consider how Jesus handled temptation (Matthew 4:1-10). He told His disciples to watch and pray(Matthew 26:41).
  • (For everyone): As long as men dwell in a sinful world, temptations are going to be unavoidable. Why is it such a blessing to know that God does not constitute temptation as sin?
  • Think of some examples where you might put this principle to the test. At what point did each of those things move from temptation to sin?

Prayer Thoughts

  • Ask God to help you to recognize lust before it comes sin.
  • Thank the Lord for the truth found in His word.