A Temptation as Old as Time Itself
By Dawn Tolbert
“For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—comes not from the Father but from the world.” 1 John 2:16
It’s much too easy to get swept up into the people-pleasing, selfie, social media validation craze.
My day job is working in public relations, and part of my responsibilities is to track the success of our social media posts.
I’ve noticed, though, when I write a blog post intended to honor God and shine light on His glory and grace, I’m tempted to worry about how many likes I’m receiving. That, using the terminology of today’s verse, is “the pride of life.”
John warned this type of pride, which he said was of the world, doesn’t come from or please God. This is also true for what he refers to as “the lust of the flesh” and “the lust of the eyes.” Do these sins sound familiar? They should; these temptations are nearly as old as time itself.
Genesis 3 records the fall of mankind—when humans first sinned against God. The serpent approached Eve in the Garden of Eden. He wanted to draw her to the one fruit God said shouldn’t be eaten. Eve, the first created female, looked and found the fruit “good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom” (Genesis 3:6). So she ate some and shared it with her husband.
Adam and Eve were tempted by each category today’s verse lists. As food, it would fulfill the desires or lusts of the flesh. It looked good, fulfilling the lust of the eyes. It was desirable for gaining wisdom, fulfilling the pride of life.
We’re tempted in these same areas each day. But we can stay strong and prepared by reading God’s word, the Bible, praying, and trusting in God’s loves and care for us. We can pray for wisdom and discernment so we don’t fall into temptation.
Dawn Tolbert is a contributor to Wholly Loved Ministries Daily Devotional, a Christ-follower who writes to honor God, thank Him for His goodness, and encourage readers by sharing her faith journey. She works in higher education public relations and is writing her first novel and her first book-length Bible study. She has earned a B.A. in Communication Studies and English (Gardner-Webb College), a M.A. in Professional Writing (Kennesaw State University), and an Ed.D. in Higher Education Leadership (Union University). She and her husband, Larry, live in Cedartown, Georgia, and serve actively in their church. Dawn blogs at dawntolbert.com.
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