Welcome to the Onward Christian Soldiers Discipleship Class. I am Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society and pastor of Gospel Light House of Prayer International. The purpose of this time together is to teach young believers everything they need to know about their faith in Jesus Christ and provide them with the knowledge they need to live victorious Christian lives.
Our key Bible verse is 1 Corinthians 10:13:
There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.
— PRAYER —
Our lesson today is titled “How to Overcome Temptation, Part ”
In this section of our Onward Christian Soldiers discipleship class, we are looking at specific temptations that are, as the Bible says, “common to man.” We are looking at what the Bible says about these sins so we can be aware of its dangers and so that we can hide Scripture in our hearts to use when we are tempted.
The sin that we are looking at today is the sin of “sloth.” This is the fourth sin in a list of 12 temptations that comes from two sources — one ancient and one modern. The first source is a list that was developed by monks in the early church called “the seven deadly sins” or the “cardinal sins.” The second source is a Barna survey from 2011 which tracked the top temptations Americans admitted to struggling with.
Today, we will be looking at Proverbs 12:11. (Remember, the text of this lesson is made available online after each class, so you can go to our website GLHOPI.com, click the “Onward Christian Soldiers” banner on the home page, and begin to learn these verses by heart throughout the week.)
He that tilleth his land shall be satisfied with bread: but he that followeth vain persons is void of understanding.
In Old Testament times, there were two primary occupations that most people were engaged in — agriculture and raising livestock. People made their living by working with their hands on the property that they owned. They ate and provided for their own needs based on the fruit of their own labor. Most families would be considered self-sufficient. It was a very serious matter if one did not work his own land or take care of his own flocks. He would not be able to supply for his needs, nor would he be able to sell the surplus of his goods for profit or trade them for the goods he needed.
Matthew Henry commented on this passage, “It is men’s wisdom to mind their business and follow an honest calling, for that is the way, by the blessing of God, to get a livelihood. He that is willing to take pains in work shall have food convenient for himself and his family, enough to bear those under his care comfortably through the world. Even the sentence of wrath upon man has this mercy in it: ‘Thou shalt eat bread, though it be in the sweat of thy face.’ Be busy. That is the true way to be easy [or to be at ease in life].”
Some, however, are not willing to work their own land (physically or metaphorically). Instead, they follow “vain persons void of understanding.” The Hebrew word translated as “vain” means “empty, worthless, or idle” men. If you waste time with people who are vain, meaning people who have no vision, no purpose, no drive to accomplish things in life, you will eventually end up like them.
Computers operate on a simple principle of input and output. The user inputs something, such as a search term, and the computer outputs something, such as search results. If you don’t put anything in, you don’t get anything out. Some people only want to be on the output end of life. They want to get, get, get, and never want to put in the necessary work that produces results. The Bible says that those who think and live in this manner are “void of understanding.” They don’t understand how life works. You can’t be ‘satisfied with bread’ unless you ’till your land.’ You won’t have your needs supplied unless you put in the necessary work.
If you struggle with sloth or laziness, take this passage to heart and begin to use it the next time you face that temptation.
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If you do not know Jesus Christ as your Saviour, John 3:16 states, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
The Bible also says in Romans 10:9 and 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved…. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and I want to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! I want to congratulate you on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
Until next time, May the Lord Bless You!