Sunday, January 3, 2010

Test or temptation?

Does God test us? The answer is yes! "... we speak as men approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel. We are not trying to please men but God, who tests our hearts." 1 Thessalonians 2:4 Does God tempt us? No! "When tempted, no one should say, God is tempting me. For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone;" James 1:13. So what about Genesis 22:1? "And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am." (KJV). The NIV states it this way - "Some time later God tested Abraham. He said to him, Abraham! Here I am, he replied." One must study Hebrew to understand how translating certain words to English often causes issues that may lead to doubt of the Bible's accuracy. So what is the difference? Testing shows we are sincere in our efforts to serve the Lord and makes us stronger. Tempting on the other hand is a form of trickery. Satan tempts us because he wants us to fail. God tests us because he wants us to succeed!