““Woe to the world for temptations to sin! For it is necessary that temptations come, but woe to the one by whom the temptation comes!”
Matthew 18:7 ESV
Why are temptations so interesting and mysterious?
We think that the things we are tempted by will make us better, fuller, more adequate, which means that somewhere something has made us feel less than. It is a theme that starts out in Genesis 3 and runs through different parts of the Bible. Temptation to run from the one who blesses us to the one who curses us. It seems like an obvious choice and yet somehow the subtleties overcome our rational mind and we quickly choose incorrectly.
Temptations are a reality, Jesus warns us of them yet for some reason, sin, our tainted self identity, our pride tainted image, greed for what could be. Temptation encourages us to dream and miss the reality of what is. To miss God and our relationship with Him in the mundane, the normal, the everyday. Temptation takes away the recognition of the everyday miracles, to recognize the burgeoning kingdom of God that comes into view through Jesus, the one who resisted temptation to give us life and forgiveness. To cover us in His righteousness and His grace.
Isn’t it strange that temptation makes us think that we can do better than Jesus? Yet He is the one who has given us more than we know. Whatever we are tempted with is more than we have any need for.