Friday, February 24, 2012

Overcoming Temptation

     Recently I have been reading from the book Teachings of the Presidents of the Church. These books are about the life and teachings of the Latter-day Prophets of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Prophet I have been reading about it President David O. Mckay. He was a Prophet for about 20 years from 1951-1970 and many people loved Pres. McKay. I have learned a lot from the small parts that I read and I wanted to share a few things from His teachings specifically regarding Overcoming Temptation. 
     We all go through different trials and tests in life. That's a part of mortality. Along with that, because Satan rebelled and was cast out of Heaven, he wants to destroy God's plan which gives us an opportunity to return to live with God. Therefore, Satan tempts us to choose evil and make mistakes so we won't be able to return to God's presence. However, even though we all fall short and sin, we can conquer Satan and his temptations.
     Jesus Christ Himself was tempted of the Devil, found in Matthew 4, yet Christ never gave in to the temptations Satan tried to throw at Him. Because Christ overcame temptation, "he is able to succour them that are tempted" (Heb. 2: 18). That is one thing we must remember, Christ can help us overcome the temptations we face in life.

Pres. McKay tells us, "Every temptation that comes to you and me comes in one of three forms:
  1. A temptation of the appetite or passion;
  2. A yielding to pride, fashion, or vanity;
  3. A desire for worldly riches or power and dominion over lands or earthly possessions of men." 

    He then gives some wise counsel, "You cannot tamper with the Evil One. Resist temptation, resist the Devil and he will flee from you. [See James 4:7.]"  Just say NO when the temptation comes!
One final quote that I loved from Pres. McKay and which gives me hope and courage to resist says the following
"Your weakest point will be the point at which the Devil tries to tempt you, will try to win you, and if you have made it weak before you have undertaken to serve the Lord, he will add to that weakness. Resist him and you will gain in strength. He will tempt you in another point. Resist him and he becomes weaker and you become stronger, until you can say, no matter what your surroundings may be, “Get thee behind me, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.” (Luke 4:8)."
I truly believe that the more we resist temptation, the more strength we will have when another temptation arrives. I am confident that the Lord will not allow us to be tempted above that which we are able to handle. God knows how much we can take and He knows we can resist Satan if we trust in Him enough to try and resist. Whatever you may be facing in this life, there is always hope through our Savior Jesus Christ. Just read your scriptures, pray, and do your best to keep the commandments and you will be able to resist any temptation that comes your way!

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