“Always bind them to your heart;
tie them around your neck.
When you walk here and there, they will guide you;
when you lie down, they will watch over you;
when you wake up, they will talk to you.”
Every single temptation is difficult to deal with at the moment. The reason is that the nature of temptation, according to James, first begins with being drawn away by a person’s “own evil desire” (James 1:14). In other words, temptation occurs within us even if we are believers because, in this life, every one of us struggles with evil desires. Thankfully the gospel provides power to overcome temptation because, according to the gospel, we are no longer slaves to sin but slaves to righteousness. So temptation, while enticing, cannot control us. Ultimately, we can and must say “no” to those evil desires because we have newer, more powerful desires to honor God and fulfill his commands. However, in our trials and battles against sin, James does say, “if any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God—who gives to all generously and ungrudgingly—and it will be given to him.” What I take this to mean is God will give you wisdom if you ask. And here’s the great part; we have lots of wisdom in the Proverbs. And when fighting sin, Proverbs 6:20-35 has wisdom directly from God.
Proverbs 6:21-22 says that it’s best to take preemptive strikes against temptation when it comes to the battle with sin. Proverbs 6:21-22 says in regards to wisdom:
“Always bind them to your heart; tie them around your neck. When you walk here and there, they will guide you; when you lie down, they will watch over you; when you wake up, they will talk to you.”
In other words, always let wisdom be your guide. Before you’re even in a situation where you’re tempted, be led by wisdom. Before you are flattered by someone who will lead you away from God, be wise and know beforehand to avoid a relationship with an individual. I tell this to many people who are on their way to college and leaving the safety and protection of their parents. Have your mind made up in advance. Before you’re tempted by the vices that may be ahead, have your mind made up what kind of person you want to be, what kind of life you want to live, and what kind of things you want to avoid. Avoid temptation by saying “no” to something you already know will lead to nothing good. That’s wisdom from God.