Tempted to do good?
Before a man comes to Jesus, admitting his unholy sinfulness, his inability to be otherwise, his consequential guilt before God, and thus need for a Saviour — before all that a man may not be tempted. It is not till a man turns round to swim upstream that he discovers the downstream pull… not until a man walks uphill that the downhill tug is felt fully.
A good man may consider doing bad, and a bad man may consider being malicious, but these considerations more often arise from within him. The Devil has no interest in wasting his precious time on a man already his.
But the Christian faces in addition to the desires of his flesh the onslaught of Satan. This enemy works with the flesh to turn a believer sideways at first, never full round as that would reveal him, but sideways, perhaps just a tad at first, then another tad, and a tad more. As Frances Schaeffer put it, “Accommodation leads to accommodation, which leads to accommodation.”
Very often the Christian is duped by the temptation to do good, rather than to do evil.
A call comes, “Can you please help! We need a man (or woman) to drive Emma to the grocer once weekly.” “Can you help? We need people to distribute tracts on Saturday mornings.” “Can you help? We need someone to make sandwiches for the homeless… sing in the musical, make costumes for the play, write letters to prisoners, join the protesters…”
These are all good things… some, very good things… but soon they may make Marthas of Marys as Luke’s gospel records,
As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”
“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:38-42)
Be wary… Do not be duped to choose ‘good’ over ‘better.’