Prayers from the Trenches

The Lord's Prayer Teaches Us Ways To Battle Temptations

Troy Spilman
Oct 15, 2023    38m
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Have you ever found yourself tempted by sin, or felt insecure in your relationship with Jesus? We live in a world where Satan wants to draw us far from God. His tactics are lies and temptations, and the Lord's Prayer teaches us ways to battle against these temptations. Video recorded at Upland, California.

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Troy Spilman: [00:00:19] Hey friends! Good morning, I'm Troy, one of the pastors here. So I get to lead us through the final verse of the Lord's Prayer. So today's verse we'll be diving into, which is the closing verse that kind of wraps everything up, it feels like a bit that we're jumping into the deep end of the pool. It has some gravitas to it, you could say. So here it is, let's say it one more time, "And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one." Okay, so this is a heavy topic, I'll just be upfront about that. The reality is that we have an enemy that is opposed to the plans of the Lord, and since we as believers are part of the family of God, we also have inherited this enemy that we're not to take lightly.

Troy Spilman: [00:01:13] I'm thankful for Gina's testimony, it's so wonderful how the Lord has delivered her and set her free from the hold of the enemy. She invites God into her life on a daily basis, I just love that idea, she's like, I'm going to bring, intentionally, God into my life, I need to walk with him, trust him today. And she involves others in the process, you can sense that too. Just on her journey with the Lord, there are others that are walking along with her as she walks alongside others in support of them as well.

Troy Spilman: [00:01:47] Jesus wraps up this model prayer by encouraging us to turn to the Lord quickly in the midst of two related scenarios. Okay, so the first is that when we're faced with temptation that is calling out our name, the first has to do with temptation. The second is when we're facing the pressure and onslaught of the devil. [inaudible] We're to call out from the trenches of life, we're to cry out to our Lord and Savior in the midst of these challenging times, we realize there's something bigger going on there, that we're engaged in a spiritual battle. Now, it's comforting to know that we're asked, in fact, we're instructed to cry out to God in the midst of our situation, in the midst of the battle, and in the midst of the trenches. We know that he hears us, and cares deeply about us and our situation. What Jesus is getting out of here is that prayer is a pathway to victory. We can have victory in this fight, but prayer is the pathway.

Troy Spilman: [00:02:56] The Apostle Paul lays out here what the battlefield looks like, he says in Ephesians chapter 6 verse 12, "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms." So there's a battle playing out all around us for the hearts and souls of men and women. The Bible speaks of this war as a fact, often behind the scenes, there are forces at work to sway men and women to rebel against God, or at least a minimum, not to see it worthy or worth their time and energy to pursue God.

Troy Spilman: [00:03:39] C.S. Lewis put it this way, "There is no neutral ground in the universe. Every inch, every split second is claimed by God and counter-claimed by Satan." Okay, so if this is true, if there really is no such thing as neutral territory, then it follows that we must each choose a side, and choose a side and be all in. Satan literally means the adversary, Jesus describes him as "A thief who comes to steal, kill, and destroy." And he has armies of evil spirits that do his bidding. The Bible doesn't address the topic of evil as something that's abstract, or something that's just kind of out there, and it's undefinable, but it's a very real, large, alive, organized force that is set against the truth and the ways of God. On the heels of Jesus calling Satan a thief, he gives humanity another option, he says, "I have come that you may have life, and you'll have it to the full." He promises abundant life, but all must individually turn to Him. Now, if you have not chosen to follow Jesus yet, he invites you to become his follower today and experience the life that he has in store for you, access to meaningful life here and now and for all eternity gives us eternal hope.

Troy Spilman: [00:05:08] We'll have the prayer ministry team up here, as you saw, they'll be back up here at the end. They would love to be able to pray with you at the end of the service and be able to guide you in how you can make Jesus your Lord and Savior personally. So be ready for that. So Jesus instructs us, with this battle in mind to continue this prayer by asking the Lord, "And lead us not into temptation." So the first request is this, asking for the ability to resist temptation and sin. On face value, it could appear that this is inferring that God is purposely trying to trip us up, and we need to ask him not to do that. James, one of the writers of the New Testament, clearly lays this out that this is not the case, this is not what is going on here. In James chapter 1, verses 13 and 14, he says this in his letter, "When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed." Okay, so temptation is not of God, it's our own desires. But why is it allowed? Why does it even tolerate it? Well, Satan serves a purpose, at least for the time being. His existence offers us a choice, a real choice, in order for love and obedience to be genuine, to actually have meaning, there has to be a real choice not to love. Not to love the Lord, and not to be obedient to his ways, love and obedience only matter if there's a real viable option not to obey and not to love.

Troy Spilman: [00:06:52] Pretend, just pretend, that I had the expertise to develop a lifelike computer program that tells me all day about how much it loves me, no matter how convincing it might appear, we all know that's not love and maybe a little creepy. But we realize choice is needed, right? Choice is needed. When we cry out, "Lead us not into temptation" we confess our need for help. We're saying, I can't do this on my own, we need the protection and deliverance that our loving Heavenly Father brings. This is us asking God to provide what we and ourselves do not have, what we don't possess.

Troy Spilman: [00:07:34] The goal of Satan is to use temptation to snare us, to bring distance between us and the Lord. So we often pray for protection from physical danger, right, physical danger, harm, and illness, we pray those things on a fairly regular basis. Why would we not include spiritual dangers such as temptations? Maybe that should just be incorporated into our regular prayer that we do, just like it's incorporated here into the Lord's Prayer that Jesus models for us. If we truly pray, lead us not into temptation, it will be lived out in several ways. It will actually live out in our lives. It will mean not boasting in our own strength as we rely upon his strength, realizing I need his strength to be able to do this. We don't go looking for trials, yet by faith, we walk in them as they come our way. We trust that trial has a purpose and he's going to give us what we need. We don't dance around temptation, we're not waiting to see how close we can get to the line, waiting to see like, okay, can I get this close? Can I get this close? We band together with others, choosing not to go it alone.

Troy Spilman: [00:08:48] Friends, the reality is that as believers, we need each other, we are better together. The Bible paints this fight in terms of a battle with soldiers. You have soldiers work together in groups, you have squads and platoons, you have companies and battalions, so we need each other. We need to have each other's backs. We need to pray for each other, encourage each other, remind each other to stay focused, and not let down our guard. The goal here is to find others that you can be real with, and they can be real with you. This brings needed accountability into our lives. So my question for each one of us would be, who is it in your spiritual squad? Who's got your back and you have their back?

Troy Spilman: [00:09:39] Now it's good to address a related issue here, there's a big difference between being tempted and enduring a trial. So the end goal of a trial is refinement, tough situations grow us, they just do, that's kind of part of the nature. They make us stronger and cause us to walk in humility and become more Christlike. Trials are God's boot camp to grow us and be useful for his kingdom. James chapter 1, verses 2 and 3 says this, Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance." Now this could be a sickness, a friendship that abruptly ends, the loss of someone close to us, maybe the ending of a job, an accident, or an injury, maybe playing pickleball, legal challenges, and a long list of other difficulties. Now this refinement process makes us stronger, and the end result is perseverance, as James talks about.

Troy Spilman: [00:10:46] Paul here gives us more insight on how temptation works. First Corinthians, a letter to the Church in Corinth, chapter 10, verse 13, "No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it." So what we experience is common, it's not uncommon, it's something felt by all. And there's a way to escape, but we have to be looking for it, but it's there when we cry out, and lead us not into temptation.

Troy Spilman: [00:11:26] Years ago, I visited some missionary friends in Japan. Now, one of the days we went to a traditional Japanese bath house, and the water there that you bathe in was up to 140 degrees. It's so hot, literally, I could only get myself to stick my big toe in, and then the other toes after a little while. And then finally I got brave enough to put my entire foot, and then my other foot, and then the leg, and then the other leg, and then the big step, up to the waist; that's right, it was quite the process. But that's often how temptation works, our sensitivity lessens over time, we become a little used to and become a little numb to it, and kind of takes this to the next step. It might start off kind of innocent for the most part, but yet, it steps up in degrees.

Troy Spilman: [00:12:19] Temptations are simply counterfeits, they promise to satisfy, yet leave us empty, and further from being the people the Lord wants us to be. One of the devil's main roles is to tempt us. Now there are obvious temptations, right? We shouldn't let our guard down about things such as stealing, lying, cheating. But here's the trick, it isn't about the quantity or degrees of the offense, it's not just, well, it's just a little bit, it's about crossing a line that's a compromise of godly values. Maybe it's as simple as inflating your write-offs for filing taxes, just a little bit. Now there are temptations to waffle in regard to integrity, we're called to say what we mean and mean what we say and then actually follow through with it. But we say a lot of things, we tend to kind of be flippant, and we kind of, like, you know, say things like this could even be, yeah, yeah, let's get together soon, and I have no intention of getting together with this person. Right? But we say stuff like that a lot. Look, we need to be people of our word, we need to say what we mean and mean what we say and then follow through with it.

Troy Spilman: [00:13:30] Now, some temptations could be things that start off as good but turn into excess. This could be eating too much, even too much exercise, which I kind of can't imagine, but I know it happens. Having to have the latest fashion trends in magazines, TV, or TikTok, we can develop warped priorities. We could be tempted to adopt ungodly attitudes; this could be subtle. Maybe it's the envy of another's status, their looks, career, house, maybe their family. Maybe it's harboring unforgiveness as Pastor Dan talked about last week. Maybe it's sharing info about others that really isn't your business. We got to say something like this, like, so-and-so just needs to get with it, I'm just saying is all, right, like, we can all probably be guilty of that to some degree. All these can be bait that just leads us down the wrong road.

Troy Spilman: [00:14:34] And as we fall for the bait, do you know what the devil does? He makes me feel terrible about it. You call yourself a Christian, look what you just thought or said or did. Why even show up to church? You have too many struggles. What if others found out about your struggles? What have they found out about your issues? They wouldn't want anything to do with you, you aren't worthy to be his follower, you should just bail out and chart your own course. These are all just lies, that's what happens, we fall for the bait, and then he accuses us, he's the accuser of the brethren.

Troy Spilman: [00:15:10] When we do fall, what do we do? Well, John says this, in his letter to the early church, in First John 1:9, he says, "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness." This is a promise, friends, that we can take to the bank, but we have to do our part. We need to come to him, we need to confess, but he promises if we do, he'll forgive us. Yeah, well, there might be some natural consequences we have to deal with, yes. Are we going to have a fight ahead of us? Yes. But we trust that God will give us what we need. Jesus told his disciples in the garden the night before he was arrested, watch, and pray that you do not enter into temptation. We're not to let our guard down, watch yourself, watch your back, have each other's back. So we say, and we cry out, lead us not into temptation. may this become our prayer.

Troy Spilman: [00:16:04] The verse continues and says, "But deliver us from the evil one." So request number two is asking for victory over the plans of the devil. We're asking for victory over the plans of the devil. The stress of this prayer is on our complete dependence on God for avoiding sin and being delivered from the plans of the devil. The great British author C.S Lewis puts it like this, "Enemy-occupied territory, that's what this world is. Christianity is a story of how the rightful King has landed." You might say, landed in disguise, and calling us to take part in a great campaign of sabotage. It's comforting, friends, to know that we're on the winning side. Yet for the time being, Satan is the god lowercase g of this world, but as an imposter and only for a season.

Troy Spilman: [00:16:56] There's a scene in the Bible that peels back the layers for us to get a glimpse of the spiritual reality of what it could look like. It's set in Second Kings, in the Old Testament, the nation of Israel is led by King Jehoram is surrounded by an invading army of Aram from a neighboring hostile country. We see an interaction between Elisha and his servant while in the capital, it says, "When the servant of the man of God got up and went out early the next morning, an army with horses and chariots had surrounded the city. “Oh no, my lord! What shall we do?” the servant asked. 16“Don’t be afraid,” the prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” 17And Elisha prayed, “Open his eyes, Lord, so that he may see.” Then the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha." The Lord goes on to give Israel a great victory without any bloodshed in the nation of Aram no longer sought to attack Israel from that day forward. This gives us, friends, a glimpse into the spiritual world around us.

Troy Spilman: [00:18:04] I wonder how often the Lord has intervened in our lives, has protected us, and guides us without us ever even knowing. Some day in heaven maybe we will. "Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.", says Peter in First Peter 5:8. We need to be alert, and ready, the enemy has a goal, he wants to sidetrack us, he wants to take us out of the race, but yet God has another plan. In some places, the spiritual battle is very overt and out in the open, and in other places, his tactic seems to be to kind of stay out of sight and out of mind and keep a low profile.

Troy Spilman: [00:18:49] In Southeast Asia, it's often where I've been a few times led up trips to Thailand and other places around there, it's often overt, there are these spiritual houses that are outside of the homes, businesses, and even our hotel that would stay at, there kind of these small little houses that are put on a pedestal. They're often brightly colored, they're intended to provide shelter for spirits that could cause problems if they're not appeased. So they want to keep them happy, and so this is what they do, so they'll put out flowers, they'll put out food, they'll put out drinks. You'll see, like red Fanta's with a straw sticking out. When people walk by, they bow with respect and homage. Beyond these bright and colorful houses, you can kind of feel it, there's this dark, oppressive spiritual presence. The value placed on human life in these regions often is very, very low. We work with Orphanage Immanuel in Thailand, my friend Ron Miller actually be here next month, and so he's been involved with rescuing children from neglect, abusive situations, and even from modern-day slavery. He raises these kids up in the ways of the Lord, and they now have five different orphanages all throughout this region, making a difference one life at a time. They equip them, train them up, and they go back to their villages and share the Gospel and see the work that God has done in their lives. But yet there's more work to be done.

Troy Spilman: [00:20:15] Now here in the US, for the most part, the tactic for the devil seems to be to lay low and keep us distracted by chasing after things that have no eternal lasting value. So C.S Lewis writes this in The Screwtape Letters, which basically it's an elder demon, Screwtape, writing to his nephew on how to best guide those that are under his charge. So the idea is this demon has charge of someone, and so he says this to him, But do remember, the only thing that matters is the extent to which you separate the man from the enemy, which is the Lord. It doesn't matter how small the sins are, provided that their cumulative effect is to edge the man away from the light and out into the nothing. Indeed, the safest road to hell is the gradual one, the gentle slope soft underfoot without sudden turnings without milestones, and without signposts." There's something timeless about these writings from C.S Lewis. I encourage you, if you haven't read The Screwtape Letters, I think you should. Even though it's written in a different timeframe, I think it still applies to us today and gives us insight into the dynamic of the spiritual battle and how it may work. "It could be said that as a culture, we have been kind of lulled to sleep spiritually for the most part, gently being guided away from the truth and the good news of the Gospel. In the spiritual sense, we all have a role in this fight." In the spiritual battle, we all have a role to play. Friends, we've been given armor, we've been given weapons, but they don't do us any good if they're piled in the corner of the garage, we actually have to use them. Paul was telling the church to suit up, we need to suit up because there is a spiritual reality that's hostile to us, and we have a fight ahead of us.

Troy Spilman: [00:22:04] So we're going to tear apart this passage a little bit, Ephesians chapter 6:13-17. It says, "Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people." So as Paul traveled around Asia Minor, he was sharing the Gospel, the hope that's found in Jesus, and he developed some enemies. And as the Jewish leaders were really upset that their power was shrinking, they no longer had the same influence over people. And so Paul was often arrested, sometimes thrown in jail, and there were times that he was actually chained to a Roman soldier. So he got tons of time to be able to see this is what a soldier looks like, and here's their equipment, and here's what they wear. And so I think he just took note of it while he was sitting there with him, and then he goes through the different pieces of armor and what a soldier might have in their possession.

Troy Spilman: [00:23:34] He talks about the belt of truth, which holds the whole uniform together and carries weapons strapped to it. We're girded with his truth, and it doesn't change, it doesn't falter, it holds our life literally together. The breastplate of righteousness, so this is His righteousness. And we follow his lead, and we do what's right, and we quickly own up when we don't. Boots that deliver the gospel of peace, we carry the good news, friends. We would travel, of course, in that day, really, the only option was with your feet. I think so many of the disciples, and even Jesus himself, they covered a vast territory, and so they covered this and they had some kind of shoes, the soldiers had these boots. And so we carry the good news, the good news that brings true peace and sets others free from the bondage of sin and death. And then there's the shield of faith, in this world it's a journey of faith, it counters the lies that fly at us as these fiery darts, the lies that were pelted with, we have the shield of faith. And then there's the helmet of salvation that protects our head, it protects our mind, it gives us this eternal focus of what we're fighting for.

Troy Spilman: [00:24:50] Now, this is all defensive so far, however, we're going to take a closer look at the sword, which is the Word of God. We'll also focus on prayer. Now we have weapons to yield, the Word of God, which is timeless, and then we have prayer. So let's talk about the Word of God first, which Paul calls the sword of the Spirit. Now the author of Hebrews backs this view, and he says this in Hebrews chapter 4 verse 12, "For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart." It is the idea that the Word of God is sharp and useful, and it cuts right to where it needs to. The sword here is actually called a gladius, it is where we get the term gladiator. It's a short sword that the Roman soldiers would use for close combat.

Troy Spilman: [00:25:41] In my final year at college at UCSB, I was a student leader for an organization called Cru. In the last couple of meetings that I was in charge of, I was a weekly meeting coordinator, and so I was in charge of it. And so the last couple of meetings didn't go so well, you could actually say that they were pretty much disastrous. And I was just tormented by it, I felt this guilt, but especially even just throughout the night, I felt like there were thoughts that were just implanted in my mind. Why don't you just quit? And you thought that you could do the Lord's work? What made you think that you could lead a ministry? I just felt this oppressive spirit that I was just overcoming me the last couple of days after these meetings. And being awakened all through the night, kind of almost systematically, I felt like I was awakened and there was this fearful and overpowering dread that I had. So the next day, on Saturday morning, I showed up at the Cru leader's staff house. I'm sure that's not really what he is expecting, but there was a wife and husband who co-led together, and I remember meeting with them. And just kind of I really showed up there to quit, that was the whole idea, I was just going to throw in the towel, I was done. But as I shared with them and told them what was going on, they stopped, and they prayed for me, and they shared some scripture with me. And the scripture that actually still sticks with me today is, "Greater is he who is in you than he who is in the world." And that just spoke a lot to me. It spoke to me of, okay, if Jesus is for me, who can be against me? And so they encouraged me, and they prayed for me. And as I was getting ready to just resign, they looked at me and said, well, we'll see you next week, welcome to the fight. I was like, wait, what? I thought I was going to...Oh well, okay. And I'm so glad that they actually handled it that way because I really believe I'm still here today in ministry because they kind of gave me that push and were there.

Troy Spilman: [00:27:51] I found that the Word of God really is a weapon for us to yield. There are times I might be anxious, and I can proclaim, "Cast all your care upon him, for he cares for you.", in First Peter chapter 5. When I am feeling weighed down, I can repeat the words of Jesus, "These things I have spoken to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation. But be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." I remember going, okay, I get to attach myself with that victory as an overcomer. When I'm feeling intimidated, I proclaim this truth, "There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out all fear." God's word is powerful, friends, but we have to use it, we have to yield it. With 20 million Bibles sold each year in the US alone, it doesn't mean that we actually use them, like any tool or weapon, we actually have to pick it up, we actually have to put it into use. We can't just own a Bible or have the app on our phone, we have to yield it. Well, let's remember that God's Word is alive and active, sharper than any double-edged sword, it gets to the heart of the matter, and it lays bare in our thoughts, in our attitudes, so let's use it.

Troy Spilman: [00:29:03] Okay, so let's talk about prayer. Paul encourages us with this, "Pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people." This is in Ephesians chapter 6, verse 18. In the first century world, long-distance firepower was the longbow. It's where archers could be a long way off and still be able to hit their target. Prayer is about calling on the resources that directly impact how the battle plays out here on Earth. I liken prayer to the weaponry of this era. Martin Luther, he says this, "We must all practice violence and remember that he who prays is fighting against the devil in the flesh. Satan is opposed to the church, the best thing we can do, therefore, is to put your fists together and pray.

Troy Spilman: [00:29:55] Why is it such a challenge to pray? Why is this difficult for us? Because it's really, really effective, it's an effective weapon, if it's used. And the enemy knows this, strategically, it would be smart of the enemy to try to thwart this, to plant ideas or thoughts that it's a waste of time. We might actually hear some whispers in our ears that time spent in prayer is not worth it. We might also think of all the other things we could be doing. What could we be doing with our time? The enemy would love to be able to kind of show us that, you know, here's what you could be doing instead. We might even get a little too comfortable when we're trying to pray and start to doze off. Which, by the way, has never happened to me while I'm praying with my wife. Okay, maybe a couple of times. Yep. This is all part of the spiritual battle.

Troy Spilman: [00:30:49] Let's look at what might need to go in order for prayer to happen in a greater way in our lives. What needs to go? What needs to be put out of our lives? Maybe this, maybe scrolling through social media until our eyeballs start to burn, maybe we need to shut that down a little bit. Watching YouTube nonstop, or streaming shows for hours, we can do this for hours. But then if we are asked to pray for five minutes, it feels like, it's like, oh, every second it's like, how long are we going to pray? Bingeing on cable news until the wee hours of the night. Look, friends, I don't really think it's a time issue, I think it's a focus issue for us, and I can struggle with it as well.

Troy Spilman: [00:31:34] Jesus tells us that prayer is worth it, but what could we be praying for? The strength to press on. A renewed spiritual focus. To open spiritual doors. Salvation for our neighbors. Boldness in our faith. The ability to resist temptation. Wisdom from God, that His peace and truth would prevail in our world. And also friends, as we read His Word, the topics come to the surface even as we are just reading the Bible, and be inspired to stop, hit the pause button, and pray about whatever topic that may come to mind. The reality is that we spend time with what we value, so if we value prayer, we will make time. The battle is on, the question is, will we engage as a soldier for Christ or be on the sidelines?

Troy Spilman: [00:32:22] So I have a couple of action items for us. The first one is the prayer walk. So in the foyer, we have a map up there of our whole area, and the idea is that you would actually go out, you and your spouse, your family, maybe a friend or two. You go out, and you walk those neighborhoods, and you just pray for the homes, pray for the businesses, pray that God would do a work in those places. And then you come back here and you highlight those areas that you've that you've walked and prayed over. And so the whole idea is, I want that to be totally covered with all these different highlighter colors. We'd love to say, hey, we've covered our area in prayer, and we are going to continue to do that. So there are pamphlets out there that actually will give you pointers on how best to do this, or you can also just download it online. And so we have the prayer walk.

Troy Spilman: [00:33:08] The second thing, in addition to finding your prayer chair, you could say times that you pray on a regular basis, is adding another tool, and this would be fasting. Pete Greig, with his How to Pray book says this about fasting, he says, "When we are facing a significant battle and need a breakthrough, it's always worth considering some form of bodily self-denial. Fasting can help focus our prayers the way a magnifying glass focuses sunlight to start a fire." Now, you know, this could mean going without food, and that's usually what is referred to, but it also could be maybe social media, alcohol, bingeing Netflix, the list could go on. So I would say start small, and then grow from there. Pick a day that you're going to skip a meal and spend that time, wherever you might kind of feel the urge, you know, like, I want to eat, that kind of prompts you to pray again. Maybe no social media for the day, or no streaming shows for the weekend, then you add on to it as it goes.

Troy Spilman: [00:34:13] So, friends, before we go, I think it'd be amiss if we didn't just stop right now, and just in our own hearts, I'm going to direct us through some prayer. We're going to have some directed prayer. We're going to start off, particularly with this area of, lead us not into temptation. So let's just have a moment, I'll just guide us through this prayer. So the first prayer prompt would be this; Pray for wisdom to see the temptations you face for what they are, lies and counterfeits from the enemy. Let's pray now. Let's pray for strength to walk away from temptations that you wrestle with. Pray for accountability partners who are willing to ask the tough questions.

Troy Spilman: [00:35:37] And then the second part is, "Deliver us from the evil one." Pray for wisdom to see the spiritual battles around you. Pray for family members, friends, coworkers, and neighbors to be set free to follow Jesus, and if they already are saved. [ray that they would be used powerfully. Pray on how you can bring real hope to those around you in simple, practical ways. And Lord, grow us. Lord, grow us in this. Lord, thank you for the hope that we have, that you tell us as we pray "Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one." Lord, I pray that we'd be able to say no to temptation, to say no to the lies, and help us to see it for what it is, or to see it as a trap and as bait. Lord, I pray that we would walk in your truth and your righteousness. Thank you, Lord, that you deliver us from the evil one, Lord, as we rely upon you to give us strength. Lord, help us to use the weapons that you've given us, these weapons of prayer, of the sword of the spirit, which is the Word of God. Lord, help us to actually use them, help us to put it into practice. Lord, thank you for the victory that is ours because of what you've done for us by sending your son to pay for the sins of the world, and that includes us. Lord, thank you for your grace, thank you for your love. Lord, give us strength, we pray this week that we would engage in the battle the way you'd want us to. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Troy Spilman: [00:37:56] So, friends, we're going to prepare our hearts for a time of communion. And if you are serving communion, you can go to the back now. We're instructed to pray, "And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one." Jesus is the one who gives us the strength to resist temptation. He delivers us from the plans of the devil. We are sealed by the blood of Jesus; it protects us from him. We pause to remember what Jesus did for us, that we've been set free from the bondage of sin and death. The devil came to steal, kill, and destroy, but Jesus came that we would have life and life more abundantly. Friend, that's what we celebrate here today.



Recorded in Upland, California.
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Life Bible Fellowship Church
2426 N Euclid Ave
Upland, California 91786
(909) 981-4848