Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Do Not Blame God (James 1:13-15)

How often does God get blamed for bad things that happened? On the other hand, when good things happened, did He get all the credit? Some people are quick and fast to push the blame onto someone else (even onto God) when any major disaster strikes. For example, with the current covid pandemic that started in Dec 2019. After 20 months, this covid virus is not beaten yet but rather it continues to rage through many countries worldwide causing a lot of strain on different countries’ economy and affecting people’s livelihood. How many people has blamed God for allowing this to happen? This is the same when we go through trials and temptations, we questioned God and asked Him, “Why? Why me?” We have a tendency to put the blame on God when we go through difficulties.

In today’s bible reading passage, James is telling us not to blame God when we go through any temptation. James 1:13 – “When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.”” Why? Simply because God cannot be tempted and nor does He tempt anyone. But He does allow us to be tempted to test our faith. He can use trials and temptations to push us along in our spiritual walk with Him. God is holy and righteous. He is one with no sin. Because He is holy, He does not do anything that is unholy or sinful. By His very nature, He is not able to do that. It is bad to sin, but it is much worse, when it is our own fault that we fell to sin, to charge that upon God and say that it’s because of Him, and put the blame on Him. In the book of Job, God allowed satan to test Job, who was a God-fearing man, one who was blameless and upright. But did Job blame God for all the sufferings that he went through? No, he remained faithful to God and in the end, God restored back to him everything he lost, more than double fold.

If God does not tempt us, where then does temptation comes from? James 1:14 tells us that “each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed.” Temptation comes when we are drawn away by our own fleshly desires and lured to do sinful things, with the world (and satan) providing the enticement. When we failed to recognize that we are drawn away by our own fleshly desires, the next verse (James 1:15) states the consequences, which is “desire gives birth to sin, and sin gives birth to death.” Satan would always try to convince us that the pursuit of our corrupt desires will not result in death, but will somehow produce life and goodness for us. Of course, this is totally not true at all. Because in Romans 6:23, Paul already mentioned that “the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Therefore, let us not be deceived but rather be wise and remember that “satan comes only to steal and kill and destroy” (John 10:10).

Prayer –

Lord Jesus, we confess that on our own strength, we are not able to resist temptations. We need you. Please help us and guide us through every trial and temptation of life. Protect us from the evils of this world and keep us safe in your care. 

In Jesus’ name. Amen