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Russell Moore:

Gospel freedom is the most important aspect of resisting temptation.

Remember that Satan's power over you is first and foremost the power of accusation and threatened death.

In Christ, though, you have already been indicted, judged, executed, and resurrected.

You are "dead to sin" and "alive to God in Christ Jesus" (Rom. 6:11).

Regardless of whether you support or oppose the death penalty, you'd probably wince to hear about a state that executed a murderer and then had a public flogging of his corpse. Your discomfort there wouldn't be because you're soft on murder but because that act would be insanely beside the point. After all, an executed corpse can't be punished anymore. It's over.

Likewise, you've been to hell, in the cross of Christ.

You've been buried beneath the judgment of God, turned over to the Devil, and you are gone.

Now you stand in Christ, hidden in his identity, and thus free from any accusation.

Knowing that truth doesn't lead you to yield to temptation but instead to fly from it.

You're not hiding from God anymore.

--Tempted and Tried: Temptation and the Triumph of Christ, p. 170.


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12 thoughts on “Resisting Temptation and Responding to the Accuser”

  1. matt says:

    JT – something tells me you like this book! And the quotes you put up here from it would suggest your judgment is accurate. Really edifying stuff.

  2. pduggie says:

    Its almost like we’re accepted before God because the person who sinned is dead.

  3. brad newport says:

    Justin! thanks for these two posts from Russell … extremely encouraging. Always need Romans 6 reminders & reminders & reminders … blessings brother, From here, Brad

  4. Jack Vale says:

    Unless God predestines you to be damned. Which…who knows? Maybe your predestined to be damned and you are only being fooled into believing you are saved.

    “though none are enlightened into faith, and truly feel the efficacy of the Gospel, with the exception of those who are fore-ordained to salvation, yet experience shows that the reprobate are sometimes affected in a way so similar to the elect, that even in their own judgment there is no difference between them.” – John Calvin

    How do you REALLY know??

    1. Bruce Russell says:

      Jack:
      How do you really know?

      Jesus has overturned the death sentence for all who obey the Gospel.

      “Ask and you shall receive, seek and you shall find”

      Blessings.

  5. Brad says:

    How do you REALLY know??

    “We know that we have come to know him if we keep his commands. Whoever says, “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person. But if anyone obeys his word, love for God is truly made complete in them. This is how we know we are in him: Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did.” – 1 John 2:3-6

  6. Jeff says:

    I tend to think torturing someone for all eternity for failing a theology exam or because they weren’t of the “elect” at the creation of the world is quite a bit sicker and evil than flogging a corpse for a few moments or hours.

  7. Brad says:

    Basic faith is a theology exam? Yikes, Jeff.

    1. Jeff says:

      Actually, there’s nothing basic about the finer points of eschatology, particularly about stuff that hasn’t happened yet to any of us here (Death and the afterlife, and to a larger extent, what everything will look like in the end of the current age) and yet many people here think there’s no room at the table for someone like Bell who is merely speculating about things that can’t exactly be disproven.

      Yes, to say he and others who are open to his points of view are “heretics” or “going to hell” is absurd and arrogant to the extreme. But that’s nothing new for Reformed Christians.

      1. Brad says:

        “…yet many people here think there’s no room at the table for someone like Bell who is merely speculating about things that can’t exactly be disproven.”

        Jeff, I don’t see anything in Moore’s comments above about Rob Bell or “his seat at the table,” and I think there are other metas here that are much more appropriate to lodge your complaints.

  8. Jordan Reed says:

    This quote is a great help to believers, but also to those struggling with guilt who may not know of the totality of what Christ accomplished.

    Thank you for putting this up. It’s a reminder to me to go purchase this book too.

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Justin Taylor, PhD


Justin Taylor is executive vice president of book publishing and book publisher for Crossway and blogs at Between Two Worlds. You can follow him on Twitter.

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