“No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it” (1 Corinthians 10:13).
As our Brother Paul was writing to the church in Corinth to warn and encourage them, he reminded them of this simple, yet profound, truth. As I grow older this verse grows more precious. I first learned to depend on and find comfort in it back when my father was diagnosed with cancer of the vial duct. During this time, I memorized this scripture, meditated on it through the day, ruminating and drawing nearer to the Lord. I even wrote “1 Cor 10:13” on the inside of my hand, so that when I was at work and I opened my hand, there it would be to comfort and strengthen me through the day. I would like to share with you some points to ponder on this precious golden nugget from God’s word.
“No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man:”
When confronted with a difficulty or struggle in life, the first words out of our mouths is “why me?” We often feel we are alone and the only one going through this temptation. We think the difficulty is unusual and extraordinary. But you are not alone! There are others who have already gone through, or are experiencing the same thing that you are right now. I am not the only one! This is not beyond our ability with the Lord’s help!
“God is faithful!”
Those who put their trust in God can know that He will not let them down. God will provide. He keeps His promises. If we look to ourselves we are bound to fail. But if we look to God, then our problems, temptations, and struggles are not as great as they may have once looked. It is not how big our problem is, but how big our God is! To understand God’s faithfulness all we have to do is read the scriptures, “For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope”(Romans 15:4). Consider how He kept His word to the children of Israel time and time again. Look at your own life. All of us have had difficult times in the past. Look at God’s faithfulness, how He provided strength to bring us through those storms. We are here today as proof. If He provided in the past, will He not also provide now?
“God will not allow us to be tempted beyond what you are able”
It is not God’s desire for His children to be crushed. He knows our frame, what we are made of and what we can handle (Psalm 103:14). The Father often does not take away the trial, the temptation, the difficulty. Consider the night of our Lord’s betrayal. He visited the garden where He knelt down and prayed earnestly three times that this coming cup of suffering and sorrow might be taken away from Him; but each time He concluded and submitted to the Father’s will, “nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will” (Matthew 26:37-44). The Father did not take away the cup from His only beloved Son. The Father did not take it away for our sakes, for the salvation of the world! However, Luke’s account reveals to us that, “Then an angel appeared to Him from heaven, strengthening Him”(Luke 22:43). That same strength is available: our heavenly Father desires to supply His children with strength to endure and be overcomers!
Several years ago, I shared this verse (1 Corinthians 10:13) with a sister in Christ who was going through some very difficult problems. She came to the conclusion, “then I must be able to handle it.” She did not feel like she could handle it at the time, but she understood that God knows and is only interested in our good. Thus, with His help, she could bear it and she did. Great is Thy faithfulness!
God“will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it”
The Father, in His great faithfulness, will provide a way of escape. This shows us that we have a part in our escape. As our Lord demonstrated, our responsibility is to humble ourselves in the sight of God, trust Him, and seek His will. (James 4:10; Proverbs 3:5-6; Matthew 7:7-8). Often God does not take away the problem, but deliverance is obtained through His strength. During the storms of life, He provides comfort and strength through His Spirit, His word inspired by His Spirit, and His people (Acts 9:31; Romans 15:4; 1 Thessalonians 5:11-14). We have a solid Rock in Jesus Christ to steadfastly anchor our souls (Hebrews 6:18-19). His children have the privilege, because of Jesus our Savior, to “come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:16). As is so often the case, we grow spiritually when we are tested and tried. Without the trials and difficulties we could not develop and grow to be all that God created us to be! Consider 1 Peter 1:6-7, 2 Corinthians 12:7-12, and 1 Peter 5:6-10.
I hope and pray that you will find strength and consolation in this verse, as I have, and that your faith and love in the Father will grow stronger through the years of your dedication in His service!
“But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 15:57-58).