Study # 24
February 18, 1998
Harlingen, Texas

Thesis: Temptation fundamentally arises from within. Introduction: We have looked into the matter of temptation from several different directions. The most recent was our study last week about the impossibility of God being tempted by the sense of lack that drives creatures to seek fulness apart from God. We also saw that God never tempts man to either sense a lack, nor does He seek to get men to fill their lack by means of their own wisdom. The only time men have a real lack is when they have strayed from the presence of God, and when men have strayed from God it is fundamentally contradictory to think that God would tempt them to depart from Him since they already have. This evening we want to pursue this issue of temptation as James does. Temptation is always a solicitation to depart from fellowship with God. Those who already exist apart from fellowship with God cannot, technically speaking, be tempted because they are already under the dominion of sin. But, where is the real root of temptation? This is the issue that James wants to address in verses 14-16.