Closing One Door of Temptation

Devotional for Today, December 9, 2018

“Turn my eyes from worthless things; preserve my life according to your word.” (Psalm 119:37 NIV)

[The Psalmist] had prayed about his heart, and one would have thought that the eyes would so surely have been influenced by the heart that there was no need to make them the objects of a special petition; but our author is resolved to make assurance doubly sure.  If the eyes do not see, perhaps the heart may not desire; at any rate, one door of temptation is closed when we do not even look at the painted bauble. 

Sin first entered man’s mind by the eye, and it is still a favorite gate for the incoming of Satan’s allurements; hence the need of a double watch upon that portal.  The prayer is not so much that the eyes may be shut as “turned away,” for we need to have them open, but directed to right objects… 

For fear he should forget himself and gaze with a lingering longing upon forbidden objects, he entreats the Lord to speedily turn away his eyes, hurrying him off from so dangerous a parley with iniquity.

-C.H. Spurgeon (excerpted from the devotional book, When You Call upon the Lord)

We watch anything, read anything, and then wonder why our minds wander and why we can’t hold on to the peace of God.

Read Psalm 119:33-40.

Recent Entries

Joy in the Spirit

Saturday, December 8, 2018

“Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.” (John 16:24 NIV)

When Christians experience joy today, it has a much more powerful impact on the world than it did decades ago.  Why?  Because the entitlement mentality so prevalent in our society leads many people...

read more...

Happiness in Giving – Part 4: Give Something to God

Friday, December 7, 2018

“Give thanks to the Lord, proclaim his greatness; tell the nations what he has done.” (Psalm 105:1 NIV)

Jesus said, “Give to others and God will give to you.”  Someone may say, “I’d love to give to others, but I have so little to give.  You don’t know my situation.”  First...

read more...

Happiness in Giving – Part 3: … and God Will Give to You

Thursday, December 6, 2018

“Give to others, and God will give to you…” (Luke 6:38 GNT)

We all know the law of gravity:  if we drop something, it’s going to go down one hundred per cent of the time.  Just as reliable as this law of nature is a law we find in the spiritual realm—that if you give to...

read more...

Happiness in Giving – Part 2: Find Fulfillment

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

“… remembering the words that the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘There is more happiness in giving than in receiving.’” (Acts 20:35b GNT)

The apostle Paul told the Ephesian elders that as believers we have to work hard in order to help the weak, remembering Jesus’ words that...

read more...

Happiness in Giving – Part 1: Help the Weak

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

“I have shown you in all things that by working hard in this way we must help the weak…” (Acts 20:35a GNT)

The apostle Paul had come to the end of his farewell speech to the elders of Ephesus.  It was the last time he would be speaking to them in person; so they listened...

read more...

Praying for Others

Monday, December 3, 2018

“… always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.” (Ephesians 6:18 NIV)

The duty of praying for others is frequently inculcated in the New Testament.  It is one of the obligations arising from that great law which makes it impossible for any of us to live an independent...

read more...

An Overlooked Promise

Sunday, December 2, 2018

“I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life." (1 John 5:13 NIV)

In the apostle John’s first letter we find what I call the most overlooked promise in the Bible.  [In the verse above] John is speaking...

read more...

The Matter of Giving – Part 2

Saturday, December 1, 2018

"You yourselves know that these hands of mine have supplied my own needs and the needs of my companions.” (Acts 20:34 NIV)

Paul wasn’t preaching for gain.  He wanted the well-being of the flock.  When you have children you love, do you want their money—or do you want them to...

read more...

The Matter of Giving – Part 1

Friday, November 30, 2018

“I have not coveted anyone’s silver or clothing.” (Acts 20:33 NIV)

The Apostle Paul had stopped in the seaport city of Miletus en route to Jerusalem, and from there he sent for the elders of the church in Ephesus in order to bid them farewell and commit them to God, as he...

read more...

Don’t Be a Loner – Part 2

Thursday, November 29, 2018

“Be devoted to one another in love…” (Romans 12:10 NIV)

The enemy is going to use the hurts and misunderstandings of the past to isolate us.  That’s painful and makes us weak spiritually.  Don’t you know that we get strength from each other?  “As iron sharpens iron,” the...

read more...

Don’t Be a Loner – Part 1

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

“… so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.” (Romans 12:5 NIV)

You cannot be a loner, for there is great pain in being alone.  In fact, there are studies that are being done to try and turn around the idea of solitary...

read more...

The Christian's Antidote to Fear

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

“For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.” (2 Timothy 1:7 NIV)

Every day you pick up a newspaper, there seems to be something in it about the threat of terrorism.  Did you know that the greatest weapon terrorists have,...

read more...

Let’s Not Neglect Prayer

Monday, November 26, 2018

“Now when Daniel learned that the decree had been published, he went home to his upstairs room where the windows opened toward Jerusalem.  Three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before.” (Daniel 6:10 NIV)

Daniel...

read more...

Unusual Favor – Part 2

Sunday, November 25, 2018

“…As long as he sought the Lord, God gave him success.” (2 Chronicles 26:5b NIV)

As we consider the importance of Uzziah’s “seeking the Lord” and how it led to God’s blessing, perhaps we should take a closer look at what this familiar phrase really means.  Was the Lord...

read more...

Unusual Favor – Part 1

Saturday, November 24, 2018

“He sought God during the days of Zechariah, who instructed him in the fear of God…” (2 Chronicles 26:5 NIV)

The reign of Judah’s King Uzziah began with great success and promise.  A long, uninterrupted series of victories and national improvements spread his fame all the...

read more...

Two Thousand Years Later…

Friday, November 23, 2018

“These women were helping to support them out of their own means.” (Luke 8:3 NIV)

Jesus went from town to town with his disciples, proclaiming the good news of God’s kingdom.  And the Bible tells us that there were some women who went along with them.  Among them were Mary...

read more...

Seven Life-Changing Words – Part 2

Thursday, November 22, 2018

“In his distress [Manasseh] sought the favor of the Lord his God and humbled himself greatly before the God of his ancestors.” (2 Chronicles 33:12 NIV)

Because of all the evil that Manasseh had done, he was facing judgment as the Assyrians bound him with chains, humiliated...

read more...

Seven Life-Changing Words – Part 1

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

“Manasseh led Judah and the people of Jerusalem astray, so that they did more evil than the nations the Lord had destroyed before the Israelites. “ (2 Chronicles 33:9 NIV)

Manasseh was one of the most wicked kings who ever lived.  Instead of being an influence for good, he...

read more...

Some Basics to Keep in Mind in the Storm

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

“But they soon forgot what [God] had done…” (Psalm 106:13 NIV)

After years of counseling people, and judging by my own experience, I know that there are difficult seasons and moments we go through in life.  It’s frightening and stressful to go through that valley, that storm...

read more...

Let’s Do It! – Part 2

Monday, November 19, 2018

“We did this, not because we do not have the right to such help, but in order to offer ourselves as a model for you to imitate.” (2 Thessalonians 3:9 NIV)

The apostle Paul warned the believers in Thessalonica against idleness and the negative behaviors that could ensue; and...

read more...

Let’s Do It! – Part 1

Sunday, November 18, 2018

“For you yourselves know how you ought to follow our example. We were not idle when we were with you…” (2 Thessalonians 3:7 NIV)

The apostle Paul was a tentmaker by trade, and although he states that those who preach the gospel have the right of support from those being...

read more...

The Transfiguring Influence of Prayer

Saturday, November 17, 2018

“And when [Moses] came out and told the Israelites what he had been commanded, they saw that his face was radiant.” (Exodus 34:34-35 NIV)

All true prayer has a transfiguring influence.  It brings us into the immediate presence of God.  The holy of holies in the ancient...

read more...

Keep on Believing

Friday, November 16, 2018

“But we do not belong to those who shrink back and are destroyed, but to those who have faith and are saved.” (Hebrews 10:39 NIV)

The battle of the Christian life has always been not just to believe, but to keep on believing.  This is how we will grow strong in...

read more...

Tempted to Run – Part 4: Trust Restored

Thursday, November 15, 2018

“Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken.” (Psalm 55:22 NIV)

The Psalmist David had wanted to run far away from the situations and the people who were tormenting him; but he called on the Lord, who gave him the faith to...

read more...

Tempted to Run – Part 3: “O That I Had the Wings of a Dove!”

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

“I said, ‘O that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest.’” (Psalm 55:6 (NIV)

After telling God about the torment he was going through, which had been compounded by the betrayal of someone close to him, the Psalmist David expressed a longing to escape from...

read more...

Tempted to Run – Part 2: Betrayed!

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

“If an enemy were insulting me, I could endure it…” (Psalm 55:12 NIV)

David’s soul was in anguish. He was in fear for his life, and he was pouring out his heart to God.  What was compounding his suffering, rendering it doubly painful, was the fact that it was caused by...

read more...

Tempted to Run—Part 1: Being Honest with God

Monday, November 12, 2018

“My heart is in anguish within me; the terrors of death have fallen on me.” (Psalm 55:4 NIV)

Even when you’re in the center of God’s will, you can still be afflicted with one of the great temptations in life, which is to run away.  Every godly man, every godly woman, has at...

read more...

The Nations of the World

Sunday, November 11, 2018

“God reigns over the nations; God is seated on his holy throne.” (Psalm 47:8 NIV)

The patriarchs, psalmists, prophets, and apostles never heard the word globalization, but they still had an interest in the nations of the world.  Jehovah wasn’t a local Jewish deity;...

read more...

God Always Keeps a Remnant

Saturday, November 10, 2018

“‘Yet I reserve seven thousand in Israel—all whose knees have not bowed down to Baal…’” (1 Kings 19:18 NIV)

I love the fact that no matter how ungodly the world becomes, some people still maintain their devotion to God and to one another.  No matter how much betrayal and...

read more...

Follow My Example…

Friday, November 9, 2018

“Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.” (1 Corinthians 11:1 NIV)

The apostle Paul had just finished exhorting the believers in Corinth, telling them in his letter that although they were free in Christ, they had to seek the good of others rather than their...

read more...
The Prayer Center