Lately I have heard a lot of sermons and read a lot of different things about sin and the need to take sin seriously.
I see how I need to do that more in my life. I tend to excuse my sin, blame shift onto others, or think that my sin is not that big of a deal. It is not really fun to admit that, but it’s true.
As I have heard these sermons and read different things about the need to deal with our sin, I have struggled to know exactly how to fight back.
– When my kids are fighting nonstop and I have reached my end, how do I fight the impatience?
– When things do not go my way and I get mad, how do I fight the frustration?
– When I look on social media and see someone’s “perfect” house, how do I fight the coveting?
The answer is right here in Psalm 119:11. I am to hide God’s Word in my heart that I might not sin against Him.
As I know God’s Word and have it hidden, or stored up, in my heart, it helps keep me from sinning against God. It helps me to fight temptation.
Think back to Jesus in Luke 4:1–13. He is in the wilderness and the devil is tempting Him. What is Jesus’ response to every temptation? He says, “it is written” and then proceeds to quote Scripture.
When temptation arose, He used the very Word of God to fight back.
Jesus set an example for us on how to fight sin. If Jesus used God’s Word to fight temptation, then surely I should, too.
Hiding God’s Word in our hearts allows us to be ready to say no to sin and yes to godliness. As we know His Word more and spend time memorizing it and putting it into our hearts and minds, when temptation arises we can fight back with Scripture.
Several years ago, someone wronged me in a big and hurtful way. Pretty early on I made the decision to forgive them. The problem was that, every once in a while, the thought would pop into my head, “I can’t believe they did that to me, how dare they…” and I would start to get angry and bitter.
I decided to memorize Hebrews 12:15: “See to it that no root of bitterness springs up and causes trouble.” When the thought about what happened popped in my head, I started to fight it with that verse.
Nothing about the circumstance had changed, but my heart was different.
To this day, that thought will still come into my mind and I will have to fight it, but I can tell you that I do not hold any bitterness towards that person. The world would tell me I have every right to be bitter, but the Word tells me to not even let a root of it grow.
As I hid God’s Word in my heart, I was able to respond to that circumstance according to the Spirit and not according to my flesh.
Hiding God’s Word in our hearts is not easy. It will take time and it will take effort, but it is worth it. I pray that, as we hide His Word in our hearts, when temptation comes our way we will fight back with the sword of the Spirit and we will be victorious in our fight against sin.
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