Sites of Temptation

I recently visited my former university. It was nice to wander around, see the old sites, recall memories that had lain dormant. What the students thought of me I cannot tell, a middle-aged man roving about the campus, dewey-eyed. Too old to be a student, too smartly dressed to be a lecturer. I recalled being a first-year, feeling homesick and out of my depth; and then a third year about to graduate and join the world of work- not feeling homesick but still out of my depth.

I recall sitting on a certain wall and being offered drugs for the first time. My would-be supplier soon gave up. Even if I had been inclined to try his wares, I wouldn’t have had the foggiest what to do with them. He soon moved onto to a more promising customer down the road. In truth, it was very easy to spurn his advance. Snorting powders has never appealed to me. Yet other temptations, which entangle others, also ensnare me; into other traps I am more prone to fall, and others not. Though we are weak in every way, some of us are more or less tempted by greed, by sexual lust, by power, by idolatry etc, so we must guard ourselves. He who is not tempted by strong drink may be tempted by money. She who is not tempted to gossip may be tempted by rage. Hebrews 4 describes the Lord Jesus thus:

For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathise with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. (NKJV)

He was tempted in every way, yet never once yielded. He therefore understands and supports us in our time of need. He too was tempted to by all sins, and provides us with the grace and power to refuse, deny and dismiss the tempter’s wily offers.