Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall. No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it. – 1 Corinthians 10:12-13.
Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry. I speak as to wise men…. – 1 Corinthians 10:14-15a.
Flee sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body. – 1 Corinthians 6:18.
For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But you, O man of God, flee these things and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness. 1 Timothy 6:10-11.
Flee also youthful lusts; but pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. – 2 Timothy 2:22.
Di Huanran is enjoying the flooding in northeast China because he is looking for what others think is dangerous. He likes to dive from waterfalls, and he holds the world record according to Guinness for a 75 foot waterfall dive. He used to work as a chauffeur before giving it up to pursue waterfall diving full time. He stages diving performances at a water park to pay for his danger seeking record breaking dives. Even though Huanran is 51-years-old, he still makes 100 or more of the difficult waterfall dives each year. Huanran enjoys trying to find danger but we as Christians need to avoid the dangerous risk that temptations pose to our spiritual well being.
There may be some spiritual pride involved in enduring some temptations when it would be better just to avoid them. King David would have saved himself a lot of pain and heartache if after he had seen Bathsheba bathing he had just gone back down into the palace and forgotten about it. It was the time when kings go to war, and he should have saddled up a horse and headed for the front. When David thought that his son Absalom was going to take over the country, he told his servants, “Arise, and let us flee, or we shall not escape from Absalom (2 Samuel 15:14a).” That is what he should have done when he saw Bathsheba. There was a way of escape from the temptation, but he chose not to take it.
We do not enhance our Heavenly rewards when we choose to be endure temptation when we could simply take the way of escape that God provides. That was what Abraham’s nephew Lot who lived in Sodom and Gomorrah was doing as God says in 2 Peter “and delivered righteous Lot, who was oppressed (vexed his righteous soul – old KJV) by the filthy conduct of the wicked (for that righteous man, dwelling among them, tormented his righteous soul from day to day by seeing and hearing their lawless deeds)- then the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations and to reserve the unjust under punishment for the day of judgment (2 Peter 2:7-9).”
There is no need to “vex” your soul enduring temptation when there is a way of escape. Joseph fled when he was tempted by Potiphar’s wife. It caused Joseph some pain, as in sitting many years in prison to do what was right. However, Joseph stayed the course and he was God’s man in the right place at the right time to save the lives of those in his family and the lives of thousands, perhaps even millions of others.
Are you being tempted? Flee from it! Look for the way of escape, and take it!
(There may be some spiritual pride involved in enduring some temptations when it would be better just to avoid them.)