THE Way of Escape
THE Way of Escape
1 Corinthians 10:13 (NASB)
13 No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.
One well-known minister of the gospel recently shared an expanded understanding of the following frequently-used scripture. 1 Corinthians 10:13(NASB) says, “13 No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.” Some translations say, “a way of escape”, others, “the way of escape.” Those seemingly unimportant articles, “a” and “the” are very important: “a way” indicates a number of ways of escape; “the way” indicates a particular way. The original translation is “the.” Knowing this is important because context is one key to rightly dividing the Word. Reading I Corinthians 10:1-16 gives the context in which verse thirteen is given.
In a nutshell, verses 1-10 are relating to how far the Israelites strayed from God’s plan after they left Egypt. In verses 11-13, Paul is saying that as believers we do not have to follow their example and ends this passage reminding us that there is no temptation which tries to overtake us that God has not given “the way” of escape. While some Bibles make a break between verses 13 and 14, suggesting a new topic, this minister suggests that verse 14 is a continuation of the subject matter begun at the beginning of the chapter and directly connects to verse 16 which reveals “the way of escape.” Verse 16 (NASB) says, “16 Is not the cup of blessing which we bless a sharing in the blood of Christ? Is not the [a]bread which we break a sharing in the body of Christ?” Could it be that the most effective way to say no to temptation is found in the partaking of communion?
From a practical standpoint, how does this work? When we think of temptation, we often think of things concerning a sexual nature. But temptations come in all shapes and sizes – gluttony, unforgiveness, anger, jealousy and the list goes on. When you take communion, you are focusing on the two things that are bigger and more powerful than any temptation you could be dealing with. The bread is a reminder that Jesus’ body was beaten beyond recognition to guarantee that attacks on your body would never succeed. As you pause to take the cup you remember that the Blood of Jesus was shed so you could forever be in right-standing with your Heavenly Father. When you focus on the elements the emotional strains that are pulling on you will lose their hold.
No matter what the area of temptation – spirit, soul, body, emotional, financial, relational, or social – it cannot succeed when placed at the foot of the Cross. And that is what we do when we take communion. One very effective way to apply this is to write the temptation you are facing on a piece of paper and place it under the bread and the cup before taking communion. As you take the elements “see” that the Blood and the Bread have come between you and the temptation with which you are dealing. At that point any time you are tempted in the future, remember (or see) that the Body and Blood of Christ have come between you and that issue.
It isn’t surprising that “THE way of escape” really isn’t about what you do, but rather about what Jesus has done on your behalf. That’s the way God designed it. Your part is acknowledging that “you can’t, but He can.” God revealed that to us in 2 Corinthians 2:19 (TPT):9 … “My grace is always more than enough for you,[a] and my power finds its full expression through your weakness.” As always, GRACE works best through those who understand their Heavenly Father’s overwhelming desire to give it to them.
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