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Tempting Christ.

Tempting Christ.

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Published by glennpease
BY James DeKoven


" Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and
were destroyed of serpents." — 1 Cob. x. 9.
BY James DeKoven


" Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and
were destroyed of serpents." — 1 Cob. x. 9.

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Published by: glennpease on Oct 09, 2013
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TEMPTIG CHRIST.BY James DeKoven" either let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, andwere destroyed of serpents." — 1 Cob. x. 9.Tempting Christ! You straightway think of thescribes and Pharisees, hypocrites, who came to Him, ask-ing Him a sign from heaven, tempting Him ; or of thatevil one who bade him cast Himself down from the pin-nacle of the temple, saying, " It is written, He shall giveHis angels charge concerning Thee : and in their handsthey shall bear Thee up, lest at any time Thou dash Thyfoot against a stone " ; and the answer of our Lord, " It iswritten again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God."The sin of the scribes and Pharisees, the sin of theHerodians, the sin of the devil — surely not a sin possiblefor baptized people, for the children of God ! And yetSt. Paul, as if anticipating such a thought, declares, " Thesethings are written for our admonition, upon whom theends of the world are come r " and then in words of solemnwarning exclaims, "Let him that thinketh he standethtake heed lest he fell."Digitized byGoogleTEMPTIG CHRIST. 11Let us, then, consider the nature of the sin. Thetempting of Christ referred to is one of the many mur-murings of the children of Israel, as recorded in thetwenty-first chapter of the Book of umbers. "Thesoul of the people," we read, " was much discouraged be-cause of the way. And the people spake against God,and against Mo6es, Wherefore have ye brought us up outof Egypt to die in the wilderness ? for there is no bread,
 
neither is there any water ; and our soul loatheth thislight bread. And the Lord sent fiery serpents among thepeople, and they bit the people ; and much people of Israel died."ow, my brethren, most charitable to your own faults,beware how you too readily condemn the children of Israel !It was a long and weary journey in a sandy desert. Therewas a short way to the promised land ; God took them along one. To be sure, He spread out a cloud to be a cov-ering from the scorching sun, and gave them fire to be alight in the night season. Their garments did not failthem, their foot did not swell. The smitten rock followedthem, and poured out water for the thirsty. Each nightthe manna fell from heaven, to feed them with the breadof angels. And yet, looking at all this in an earthly pointof view, it had much that might make them murmur.Weary they were night after night. Even bondage seemedbetter than this perpetual wandering. They had nohome or abiding-place ; they were houseless wanderers.Bread and water was but poor food for those who had beenaccustomed to the rich produce of the valley of the ile,to the leeks and the melons and the cucumbers, to theflesh-pots of Egypt. It was but scanty diet. You whogrumble at one poor meal, who shun the cold lap of earthDigitized byGoogle12 SERMOS.and the rude embrace of the elements, would not you havemurmured as well ?And how was this tempting Christ ? There is not oneword about Him in the narrative. Except the Apostle hadsaid so, with the blinded eye with which we read theScriptures, we never could have known it. or will weunderstand it now, unless we remember that there neverhas been any revelation of God to man, from the first re-
 
corded in the Book of Genesis to the last that is foretoldin that Book of Judgments which closes the Canon, savein and through our Lord Jesus Christ. It was He whotalked with Adam. It was He who spake to Abraham.It was He who revealed Himself as the " I Am " to Moses.It was He who was leading the children of Israel with amighty hand and a stretched-out arm, with great signsand wonders, from the land of bondage to the Canaan of His promise, to the Hill of Zion which He loved. Sorepressed then as the children of Israel might be, hard in aworldly point of view as their condition was, sore tried anddistressed and weary as they were, it was Christ who wasleading them. It was He who was going before them ;they had His promise to cheer them ; it was to be but alittle while after all, and then should come the stream of Jordan, the land flowing with milk and honey, the hillsstanding about Jerusalem, and rest and peace. Thus, inmurmuring against Moses, they were murmuring againsttheir Leader, against the Jehovah angel who went beforethem, against the Lord Jesus Christ whom He was. And inmurmuring, they were tempting Him, not to sin, for Godcan not be tempted with evil, but tempting Him to leavethem, to cast them off, to punish them, to give them theirsinful desire, and to send leanness withal into their souls.Digitized byGoogleTEMPTIG CHRIST. 13Brethren, these things were written for our ensamples.Do not you commit the same sin ? Are not you temptingChrist ? You are Christ's servants, His people. You aremembers of His family, stones in His building, part of theIsrael of God. You call yourselves pilgrims ; you speak of the world as a wilderness; you fondly look to theheavenly land, to the Jerusalem which is above, which isfree, and the mother of us all. You are journeying thither ;you speak of God's providence and of His hand leadingyou. Did you ever think when trial comes, when the way

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