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Is Temptation a Sin?

Updated: Apr 10

Am I sinning if I’m tempted?

James 1:14-15

“But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.

Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.”

Despite what any may say, this verse rebuts any argument that temptation is, indeed, a sin. James states that we are all tempted, but when lust has conceived, when we give in, that it is a sin. Not before we give in, but if we succumb to whatever temptation lies before us, then it is a sin.

If you asked if the Lord Jesus ever sinned, Christians would give you an immediate “no.” That would be correct, of course. As we all know, Jesus Christ himself was tempted, but he did not sin.

Anyone who claims temptation is a sin is saying that Jesus Christ sinned.

Hebrews 4:14-15 says,

“Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.”

Notice it says that he, Jesus Christ, was ‘in all points tempted as we are,’ yet it states that he was without sin.

1 Peter 2:21-22,

“For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth.”

Here, Peter states that Jesus Christ was without sin.

1 John 3:5 says, “And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin.”

The Bible repeats itself here, saying that Jesus Christ was sinless. He had the choice to sin, to give in to Satan’s temptations, but he chose not to, obeying his heavenly father. Again, saying that being tempted is being wicked is saying that sinless Jesus Christ did, indeed, sin. That would be absurd, and contradictory to what the Bible tells us.

My conclusion is that temptation is not sin, and we can easily look to the Bible to prove that this is true.

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