Thursday, April 24, 2008


My pastor recently preached a sermon in which he brought up a good application in an unusual way. He asked, "Are there any bullets in your gun?"

Here's what he was talking about: All of us face various temptations every day (usually lots of them!). How we handle them is very important. We shouldn't be like Mae West who made the famous, or infamous remark, "Whenever I'm tempted, I give in." We should, on the other hand, have ammunition. We should have bullets in our gun.

Psalm 119:11 says, "Your word I have treasured in my heart, that I may not sin against You."

Jesus exemplified that verse and having bullets in your gun when He resisted Satan's temptations after He had fasted for forty days in the wilderness. He answered all of the evil one's attempts with Scripture - the Word of God. He treasured His word in His heart so that He did not sin, and treasured it so much that He could quote it even while under pressure.

We should do the same. When we're tempted to sin against God in subtle and not-so-subtle ways, quoting memorized Scripture is a whole lot better than throwing a Bible across the room and saying, "I know it's in there somewhere!"

Here are some practical examples: 

If you are tempted to sin by the things you look at, Psalm 119:37 is your bullet - "Turn away my eyes from every worthless thing, and revive me in your ways."

If too much chocolate cake (or anything else in which you might overindulge) is tempting, Galatians 5:23 is your bullet - "But the fruit of the Spirit is...self-control."

Wives may need this piece of ammunition - "Wives, be subject to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord" (Colossians 3:18).

Husbands may need this one - "Husbands, love your wives and do not be embittered against them" - when they're tempted to get bitter with them (Colossians 3:19).

When a bad attitude begins to creep in, Philippians 2:14 may be the needed piece of ammunition - "Do all things without grumbling or disputing (or complaining)."

The biggest bullet, or most effective one in my opinion, may be Romans 8:28. "And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose" is useful when we're tempted to think God isn't at work, or if He is that He doesn't know what He's doing.

These are just some of the ammunition we have at our disposal as God's children. Don't be like Barney Fife on The Andy Griffith Show - who had a gun, but the bullet was in his pocket, and then only one. Have a full arsenal of ammunition and some bullets in your gun!

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