No Temptation is Kryptonite

The following is an excerpt from Steve Felder’s sermon, A Way Out. You can view the full sermon by clicking here:

When I got serious about following Jesus, I discovered that had a number of sins and habits in my life, and it was a struggle to break free from them.

For example: I read in Ephesians 5:4 that obscenity and coarse jokes were not supposed to be part of the way I talked as a Christian; but I was pretty much a whiz at both of those things. The temptations to lie, cheat, or steal in order to get ahead or to have a little more were not big struggles for me. Those habits were soon in the rearview mirror of my life. But foul language and off colored jokes were a big part of who I was. That was how I entertained my friends and fit in. They were like the cover charge you had to pay to be part of the group that I wanted to run with, which gave those sins a lot of power in my life.

So I told off colored jokes to be funny, to fit in, to impress my friends and to insult my enemies. I swore when I was mad, I swore when I was happy, I dropped F bombs to make a point, I dropped F bombs when I didn’t have a point. I swore when I didn’t even know I was swearing. I was something of a swearing savant, I just had a knack for profanity. And even when I wanted to stop, and told myself I was going to stop, and promised God that I would stop - I didn’t stop.

I went around and around with this so many times with God that at some point I told myself that I couldn’t stop. I became convinced that these habits in my life were just too ingrained, they were too much a part of who I was. When I couldn’t break free from these sins, I began to minimize them so that I didn’t feel so bad about living in captivity. I told myself, “They’re just words. People like me when I tell my jokes and drop a few bombs. Surely God wants me to be liked and accepted, right?”

But when we start minimizing our sins so we can remain a captive to them… It’s just another way of saying, “This sin is irresistible; it’s my kryptonite, I will never be free from it, so I might as well give up and find a way to live comfortably with it!”

Then one day I read a promise in 1 Corinthians 10:13 that challenged my belief that these sins were irresistible.

The thing that struck me about 1 Corinthians 10:13 was this: God wasn’t telling me what I needed to do in order to live like a follower of Jesus; God was telling me what he was doing for me, to ensure that I could live like a follower of Jesus! The first half of that verse makes a promise that sounds like this:

“No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear” (1 Corinthians 10:13a).

Did you hear God’s promise in those words? He is promising us that he will not allow a temptation to come into our life that is irresistible! He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear! Some sins are harder for us to resist than others; some temptations appeal to our weaknesses and others to our strengths; but none of them are kryptonite! Why?

Because God has filtered out all the irresistible ones!

Satan wants to set you up to fail by tempting you with sins that are far beyond your capacity to resist; but God has said “No!” He has rigged the system for you so you can always survive temptation, always evade temptation, always resist temptation, and in the end so you can always escape temptation!

God didn’t remove your struggle with sin, but he did remove any temptation from your life that is kryptonite. God’s promise to you and me is that he will never allow a temptation into your life or mine that is irresistible. Irresistible temptations may well exist, but you and I as believers will never see them, because the God who cannot lie said, “I promise.”