“Dealing with temptation”

Summary of sermon by Erlo Stegen, 23 Nov 2014

Gen 39:7-18
7 And it came to pass after these things, that his master’s wife cast her eyes upon Joseph; and she said, Lie with me.

8 But he refused, and said unto his master’s wife, Behold, my master wotteth not what is with me in the house, and he hath committed all that he hath to my hand;

9 There is none greater in this house than I; neither hath he kept back any thing from me but thee, because thou art his wife: how then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?

10 And it came to pass, as she spake to Joseph day by day, that he hearkened not unto her, to lie by her, or to be with her.

11 And it came to pass about this time, that Joseph went into the house to do his business; and there was none of the men of the house there within.

12 And she caught him by his garment, saying, Lie with me: and he left his garment in her hand, and fled, and got him out.

13 And it came to pass, when she saw that he had left his garment in her hand, and was fled forth,

14 That she called unto the men of her house, and spake unto them, saying, See, he hath brought in an Hebrew unto us to mock us; he came in unto me to lie with me, and I cried with a loud voice:

15 And it came to pass, when he heard that I lifted up my voice and cried, that he left his garment with me, and fled, and got him out.

16 And she laid up his garment by her, until his lord came home.

17 And she spake unto him according to these words, saying, The Hebrew servant, which thou hast brought unto us, came in unto me to mock me:

18 And it came to pass, as I lifted up my voice and cried, that he left his garment with me, and fled out.

Joseph is a clear example to us how to deal with temptation. Temptation will always be there. And in contending with some sins, the only way to victory is to run away from it.

We must also run away from opportunities to sin.

Every Christian should have made a covenant with his eyes not even to look upon temptation. Some temptations only need a spark before it brings forth sin. Remember Job who made a covenant with his eyes not even to look upon a young girl, a virgin (Job 31:1).

Why would you live among sinners and those who are corrupt in word and deed. A person is known by his friends. Look at who your friends are, then you know who you are. In Ps 1 we read that “blessed is the man who walk not after the counsel of the ungodly, nor stand in the way of sinners, nor sit in the seat of the scornful”.

If you live in Sodom and Gomorrah, hearing their evil conversation daily, no wonder you’re defiled thereby if you’re continually in their company.

The captain of a ship or aeroplane avoid an accident firstly by avoiding a storm, not by flying into the storms.

Rev Stegen once sat in a plane next to a lady and he read the Bible. She asked him what he was reading and upon seeing that it was the Bible said that she doesn’t believe in God. Shortly thereafter the plane went through an air pocket and the teacups went flying. She cried out, ‘o God help us’. Rev Stegen then asked her why she called upon God since she said she doesn’t believe in Him.

May all of us flee from temptation. Don’t be so foolish as to lead yourself into temptation.

God is a Trinity. God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit sanctifies and makes us holy. We see that right through the Bible

Now the devil has his trinity too, the world, the flesh and the devil. If you love the world or you’re governed by your fleshly desires, you belong to the devil.

We read of a close co-worker of Paul, Demas, deserting him, because he fell in love with the world (2Tim 4:10). How was such a thing possible?

The Bible says friendship with the world is enmity with God (James 4:4). Do you hear young people, if you’re a friend of the world, you’re God’s enemy. This also applies to those Pharisees in church who love the things of the world.

The legend is told of King Midas, who loved gold and desired to be the richest person in the world. He also had a daughter called Marigold whom he loved very much, but because of his love for gold he would not spend time with her, either planning new ways to get more gold, or spending time in his large treasure room underneath his beautiful house, counting his gold. One day, as he was in his treasure room, counting his gold, a stranger appeared and asked him if he was happy. He replied that he would be really happy if everything he touched would turn to gold. The stranger told him that his gift would be granted as soon as the first rays of the sun shine into his bedroom the following morning. Then the stranger vanished. The next morning he could hardly wait for the first rays of the sun to appear, and as soon as he saw the sun shining into his bedroom, he touched his bed covering and it turned to gold. Then he touched his chair and it too turned to gold. He was wild with delight and touched the one thing after the other and turned it into gold. He went to Marigold’s garden with flowers and decided to give her a surprise by touching all her flowers and turned them into gold. After that he went for breakfast, but as he touched his glass of water it turned to gold, and he couldn’t drink it. He tried to eat a peach, but it too turned to gold. To his horror he realised that he couldn’t eat anything. Then Marigold entered and brought in a golden rose, sobbing. He asked her if she didn’t like it, but she replied that she liked living roses much more. Before she sat down for breakfast, she saw that her father looked troubled and she ran to him, but as soon as she hugged him, she turned into gold. The king was devastated. He started to realise his mistake, and cried. As he looked up, he saw the stranger before him again, and the stranger asked him if he was happy now? He replied that he had made a huge mistake and would gladly give away his gold, if he could only have his daughter back again and eat and drink again. The stranger told him to go to the river, plunge into it and then take some of the river’s water and pour it onto his daughter and food and it would become normal again. He did so and learned his lesson from that day.

The Bible says, ‘flee youthful lusts’ (2Tim 2:22).

Joseph, the husband of Mary, fled into Egypt with his wife and child, just as God warned him. If he hadn’t obeyed, Jesus would have been killed. Maybe your Jesus had been killed because you don’t walk in Joseph’s footsteps but delay obedience.

The Bible says, resist the devil and he will flee from you (James 4:7).

May we understand what we’ve heard and do it, that we drink of God’s pure water and not the polluted water of the world (John 4:13-14).

German Translation

French Translation



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