When You MUST Fight – Temptation

We’ve all been tempted and we all have our weak moments,  with our words, our emotions and our attitudes.  But one thing is for sure, when we are tempted, we have some choices to make and usually we make them pretty fast.  Many times temptations come at times when we LEAST expect it, and if we are not careful, we can get ourselves in a whole world of trouble in just a short moment.

A life time of character can be destroyed in a moment’s weakness. 

Fight the good fight of the faith…” 1 Timothy 6:12

Yes, God is a God of peace, but when it comes to temptation you will have to #FIGHT!  If you choose not to, you will lose every time.  So put on the gloves, cue the intro music, here is how to get your Rocky Balboa on!

How To FIGHT When You Are Tempted

1.  Train Incessantly – 

The best way to be ready for the fight is train for the fight.  That means you gotta train, daily – IT – NEVER – ENDS!  Be rigorous about your routine and unrelenting in your discipline.  If it is true that your enemy “prowls around like a lion ready to devour you” (1 Peter 5:8), then you better be ready to FIGHT when the temptation comes.  Be ready.

2.  RUN – 

Sometimes the best way to fight is to leave the situation.  Stop the conversation, turn off the computer, run from the situation, get outta that mall!  Flee, run, Get the HECK OUTTA THERE!  You gotta get outta there! Your future depends on it. (1 Timothy 6:11)

3.  Depend On Jesus –

What is it about us that makes us depend on our own strength when there is the power of Jesus at work within us?  He gives us everything we need to live a life of victory.  “We are more than conquerors, we are overcomers!”  (Romans 8:37) Part of the reason we give in is because we haven’t given it up!  Your dependance that is.

4.  Speak Against It –

Open your mouth, “Not on My WATCH!”  Look, you’ve worked too hard and it’s taken blood, sweat, and tears to get to where you are.  So speak up, literally!  Many temptations come when we are alone when no one else is watching.  We make foolish decisions based on pleasure, pride and possessions.  Just simply open your mouth, and speak out loud against the enemy who is trying to work in you.  Jesus spoke against the demonic forces, so should we.

5.  Think Ahead –

Many times we put ourselves in compromising situations because we have thought, “that would never happen to me.”  What you are capable of is incomprehensible, so BE CAREFUL.  Don’t underestimate the cunningness of the enemy and OVERESTIMATE your ability to deal with the evil brewing in your own heart.  Don’t be naive, protect yourself from compromising situations and you may have already won the fight.

You’ve got this – train, run, depend, speak and think!  Remember what is in the heart eventually comes out.



This Sunday September 24 – “His Story” Series Week #2 through the Gospels 

October 8  New Service times  9:30am & 11:00am


Josh Conn is the founding pastor of 217church, a contemporary church in Mercer County NJ.  217church meets Sundays at 10:30am at Sharon Elementary school in Robbinsville, NJ.  Visit www.217church.com for more information, or watch a weekend message here On Sunday October 8, 2017 we are going to 2 services times of 9:30 am & 11:00 am.

Boxing Gloves Image by generation bass  is licensed under CC by 2.0

Overcoming Temptation

What temptations are you facing in your life right now?  This Sunday at 217church we will address how to deal with these struggles.  One of my favorite stories in scripture was when Jesus was preparing for ministry. He was accompanied by Satan himself to the desert!  Jesus endured 40 days of preparation as he was taken to His limits and tested to see if He was ready for the task that was ahead.  Jesus was preparing for 3 years of grueling arguments, persecution, humiliation, and loneliness all leading up to defining moments of His victory, death on a cross followed by His resurrection!


“…God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.”  1 Corinthians 10:13

Temptation happens when our desires and God’s desires for us clash.  The question is, “How do I allow God to bend my own desires and bring them in line with what he wants for me?”  This means we are working from the starting point of depravity.  There is something wrong with us.  Something terribly wrong.  Keep this in mind, just because you are a follower of Jesus, it doesn’t mean the temptations will subside; it usually means they will increase.  The beautiful part of the picture, however, is realizing your new identity and calling in Jesus.  When you give your life to Christ, you are not saying, “I’ll try harder,” but you are submitting the purpose and will of your life to Jesus.  You submit to Him, then He continues His work in you to purify you.  (Philippians 2:12) This process is called sanctification.

5 Ways To Overcome Temptation

#1 You Already Have:  This may sound trite but you have already won!  Although you struggle with sin you aren’t defined by sin.  In countless places in scripture we are told who we are in Christ.  We are “more than conquerors, over-comers  adopted as sons and daughters, purchased at a price.”  I could go on and on.  Most of us simply have not made the decision to hate sin!  It has to be that strong.  It can’t be you kind of “don’t like it”  You can’t flirt with it and dance with it.  You have to hate it!  Hate it, HATE IT!  Speak out against it!  DESPISE it!  Then and only then will it be subdued in your life.  Remember it’s not your power that overcomes, but the power that is in you through the Holy Spirit. You may need a REVOLUTION in your mind and heart and the power of Jesus is accessible to YOU!

#2  Keep Your Eyes Forward:  This means what it means. Don’t be distracted by what is on your left or right but “press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”  (Philippians 3:14) Sometimes we lose our integrity and focus because we are too focused on the here and now.  We want immediate gratification and satisfaction of our wants as opposed to a long term better result.  When was the last time you saw your whole life before you and evaluated your current decision based on your eternal reality?  People who overcome temptation are able to see and anticipate their eternal future and the consequences of poor decisions.

#3 Diligently Prepare:  For some of you this may sound crazy.  Just when you think you have overcome a sin, the enemy will make it somehow seem more appealing and you better be ready.  Jesus’ words “man does not live on bread alone,” (Matthew 4:4)  are some of the most profound words ever spoken.  What you can anticipate, you can defeat.  Don’t act like you were caught off guard and keep in mind, “your adversary is prowling around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” (1 peter 5:8)  One of the ways the enemy will deceive you is to “sterilize” your view of him. Don’t doubt that He is waiting for His moment to destroy you, but take heart.

#4 Protect Yourself:  This is common sense! If you are addicted to shopping, then maybe you should stay out of the mall? Guard your eyes!  Guard your heart!  Here is a common sense protection for your marriage:  Maybe I am just too old school, but meeting one on 0ne with a member of the opposite sex, who is not your spouse, when your married, seems like a recipe for disaster in your marriage.  Protect yourself by setting up practical behavioral wisdom guidelines.  It will save you a lot of unwanted temptation.  What affair didn’t start as an innocent conversation?  Pray prayers of protection and when you feel it getting difficult move on to #5.

#5 Get Someone To Watch Your Back: Unconfessed, private sin leads to a breeding ground of detrimental behavior.  This is where the church is at it’s finest!  You, me, brothers, sisters, willing to go to battle for each other!  Give me someone to fight for and I’ll immediately have passion.  This is where we say, “NOTHING PENETRATES THE UNITY OF OUR CHURCH!”  Not on my watch!  The bible says we should “confess our sins to one another.” (James 5:16) You may be thinking it is too personal, too private and too difficult.  I would submit to you that it is more difficult to struggle with private sin than it is to share it and ask for the prayer of others.  This means you have to find someone you can be honest with.  Your relationship is not just about confessing sins, but also about sharing the victories and receiving encouragement from someone who has your best interest in mind.

You got this church!  Let the resurrection power of Jesus live in you as you persevere towards the calling Jesus has for you!  OVERCOME!


Join us this Sunday at 9:30 or 11 am at the AMC 24 Theater in Hamilton, NJ!  We are a unique contemporary church in Central Jersey dedicated to restoring lives and rebuilding and renewing the community around us.  If you live in the Mercer County, Burlington County, Middlesex County or Bucks County, PA area, learn more about 217church by clicking HERE