ESCAPING FROM EVILS AND TEMPTATIONS “Escape for your life! Do not look behind you nor stay anywhere in the plain. Escape to the mountains, lest you be destroyed.” (Genesis 19:17) • Many evils and temptations in this world . . . • Is running away or escaping considered a sign of weakness??? Who is stronger? Who is stronger? • When Jesus was born, St. Joseph was told by the angel to escape from Herod the king. Jesus was a baby at that time. • Jesus could have defeated Herod even when He was a baby, BUT… He preferred to escape to Egypt. WHY??? JESUS GAVE US EXAMPLES • He escaped to Egypt as a baby • When Jews wanted to stone Him, Jesus hid Himself and went out of the temple. (John 52:59) • When disciples asked Jesus if He wishes them to command fire to come down from heaven and consume Samaritans, He rebuked them and said, “You do not know what manner of spirit you are of. For the Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives but to save them.” And they went to another village. (Luke 9:54-56) ESCAPING – HOW CAN WE PREPARE? 1) IDENTIFY what you are facing… ESCAPING – HOW CAN WE PREPARE? 2) PRAY (Ask God to provide you with the strength) ESCAPING – HOW CAN WE PREPARE? 3) AVOID Five Steps to AVOID evil and temptations: 1) Recognize your tendency toward sin Five Steps to AVOID evils and temptations: 2) Run away Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall. 13 No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it. (1 Corinthians 10:12-13) 12 But you, O man of God, flee these things and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness. (1 Timothy 6:11) 11 Five Steps to AVOID evils and temptations: 2) Run away 14 Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry. (1 Corinthians 10:14) Flee also youthful lusts; but pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. (2 Timothy 2:22) 22 • When you are face to face with temptation, look for the way out that God has promised and then run as fast as you can. Five Steps to AVOID evils and temptations: 3) Resist with … “the Word of Truth” • Did you know you can carry a weapon that will make your thoughts obey Jesus Christ? • It is the Word of God! • Do you read it everyday? Five Steps to AVOID evils and temptations: 4) Refocus with praise • Praising God takes your focus off of yourself and puts it on God. You may not be strong enough, but as you focus on God, He will inhabit your praise. He will give you the strength to resist and walk away from the temptation. Five Steps to AVOID evils and temptations: 5) Repent quickly (if or when you fall into temptation) • We all fail from time to time. We all fail to flee. • It is not the end of the world when you fail, but it is very dangerous to persist in your sin James 1: 15 explains: 15 Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death. ESCAPING – HOW CAN WE PREPARE? 4) Give yourself ALTERNATIVES Remember - 1: Corinthians 10:13 ? • God can show you how to escape from your temptation. • Allow yourself to see that escape Examples: If you are tempted to lie to protect another person’s feelings, try to considering other ways to word the truth, so it doesn’t sound so harsh. If people around you are getting into bad habits (tobaccos, drugs, etc.), try making new friends. Alternatives aren't always easy, but they can be the path. God creates for you to alternatives.