Many are discouraged by temptation. They confuse temptation with sinning. It is not a sin to be tempted. It is a sin to yield to temptation. Many feel that overcoming is impossible because of what they perceive concerning the error of Original Sin. Those who teach that we are held responsible for Adam's Original sin are in error, and they use that platform as an excuse for continued sinning. If the following provision for overcoming temptation is in force for every believer, what excuse do we have for continued sinning? What sin is beyond what we can bear? What sin did Jesus not provide a way of escape for? Let those who believe that we cannot overcome, answer these questions in detail. I can promise you that their every answer will contradict the following Bible verse:
1 Corinthians 10:13 1 Corinthians 10 1 Corinthians 10:12-14 No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.
Being tempted beyond what we can bear is to be tempted to the point where it is impossible not to yield to temptation. This is the heretical theology of all who believe and teach that we cannot overcome sin. This is the heretical theology of all who mock the brethren as legalists and perfectionists when they teach that we can overcome. They thus mock Jesus and the Spirit of Prophecy:
"Our heavenly Father measures and weighs every trial before He permits it to come upon the believer. He considers the circumstances and the strength of the one who is to stand under the proving and test of God, and He never permits the temptations to be greater than the capacity of resistance. If the soul is overborne, the person overpowered, this can never be charged to God, as failing to give strength (power) in grace, but the tempted one was not vigilant and prayerful and did not appropriate by faith the provisions God had abundantly in store for him. Christ never failed a believer in his hour of combat. The believer must claim the promise and meet the foe in the name of the Lord, and he will not know anything like failure (in overcoming sin)." E.G. White, Mind, Character, and Personality, Vol. 2, p. 473.
Hebrews 2:18 Hebrews 2 Hebrews 2:17-19 Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.
Hebrews 4:15 Hebrews 4 Hebrews 4:14-16 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are--yet was without sin.
James 1:13 James 1 James 1:12-14 When tempted, no one should say, "God is tempting me." For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone;
James 1:14 James 1 James 1:13-15 but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed.
"When Arminius was defending his understanding of justification and sanctification in the light of Romans 7, he was asked, 'If it is not necessary for Christians to sin, why is it that they do sin?' His carefully considered answer was that Christians sin because they do not make use of the power that God has made available to them. (The Writings of James Arminius, Volume III, pp. 312-320. Therefore their sin can never be chargeable to God as a failure to supply them with adequate grace and strength. Dr. Ralph Larson, The Word Was Made Flesh, p. 363.
"We are living in a perilous time, and we need that grace (power) that will make us valiant in fight, turning to flight the armies of the aliens." E.G. White, The Baker Letter.
Peter admonishes us to grow in grace:
"But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ." 2 Peter 3:18.
Some on this forum have presented grace as an attribute of God that He does not extend to us except by way of pardon for sin. However, if we are admonished to GROW IN GRACE, this must mean that somehow God extends His influence or power to us in order for us to grow in grace and obedience since even Christ learned obedience by the things which He suffered:
"Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared; Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him." Heb. 5:7-9.
"By whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name." Rom. 1:5.
We can receive grace or divine influence power upon the heart in order to obey God. This we do by partaking of His nature, His mind. Is there power in divine influence? Yes! We are also admonished to partake of the Divine Nature, and in vain if this did not provide influential power.
Here is Strong's Concordance definition of grace in the context of 2 Peter 3:18, and Romans 1:5:
#5485. graciousness (as gratifying), of manner or act espec. the divine influence upon the heart, and its reflection in the life; including gratitude):--acceptable, benefit, favour, gift, grace (-ious), joy liberality, pleasure, thank (-s, - worthy).
How may one grow in grace?
"Giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue;....knowledge;....temperance;.... patience;....godliness;....brotherly kindness; ....charity." 2 Peter 1:5-8. This is all related to the three angel's messages which are capstoned thusly:
"Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus." Revelation 14:12.
Jesus Christ is the author of salvation to all who obey Him by His proffered grace power given to us as an unmerited favor gift to all who sincerely repent, and sincere repentance involves a sincere attempt at overcoming sin in the life or obedience. Remember, He is the author of salvation to all who obey Him. This sincere repentance is our effort to obey Him, and the power for the effort is provided as a free gift.
Some call this perfectionism. Some call is legalism. God's calls this a prescription for salvation for all who will obey. To deny this truth is to deny the gift. Thus we do despite to one of the prime purposes of the incarnation Atonement, that of restoring man to the image of God.
Based on the above facts, those who mock and deride those who call for overcoming sin, will be lost if they do not repent and change their mocking attitude and practice in continued sin and the teaching of such.