Temptation is a word that is perhaps not used as much nowadays compared to what it used to be.
When I was growing up I was taught that I had to ‘resist temptation’. But what does that mean?
One of the things about human beings is that they are able to imagine various possible futures. They can imagine a variety of scenarios that could happen if they were to make this decision or that decision. No doubt some of these possible futures would be more pleasant than others. Human beings are faced with many choices at many times in their lives and they hope that the choices that they do make will end up being good ones.
Of course for that to happen they hopefully will have had to think through the various options so that they are able to make an informed choice. When we use the word temptation we are apt to think of options which might appear attractive on the surface but which we know are not good for us in the end. Right from the very beginning of the Bible, the first human beings were tempted to do something which might have appeared attractive but which resulted in their expulsion from the Garden of Eden. Sometimes we are tempted to ignore things that are really important - such as our spiritual lives. Sometimes we are tempted to concentrate on things which might make us happy in the short term but which ultimately produce long term dissatisfaction. Sometimes we are tempted to think that life is all about us and forget that we are not alone on the earth. If we want to be truly happy we have to ensure that other people are happy too.
Rev. Ian McLachlan