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Think it not strange concerning the fiery trial

By A.B. Simpson


      Most persons after a step of faith are looking for sunny skies and unruffled seas, and when they meet a storm and tempest they are filled with astonishment and perplexity. But this is just what we must expect to meet if we have received anything of the Lord. The best token of His presence is the adversary's defiance. The more real our blessing, the more certainly it will be challenged. It is a good thing to go out looking for the worst, and if it comes we are not surprised. To the contrary, if our path is smooth and our way unopposed, it is all the more delightful because it comes unexpectedly. But let us quite understand what we mean by temptation. If you have stepped out with the assurance that you have died to self and sin, you may be greatly amazed to find yourself assailed with a tempest of thoughts and feelings that seem to come wholly from within, and you will be impelled to say, "Why, I thought I was dead, but I seem to be alive." This, beloved, is the time to remember that temptation itself is not sin, it is a tactic of the evil one.

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