Have you noticed some people just say, “Morning,” but not “Good morning”? Almost as if they are waiting to see if it’s actually going to be good. I think many people wake up overwhelmed before their feet hit the floor. If the cliche says, “When it rains it pours,” to them it seems like it’s always pouring!
In our series, we’ve been asking if certain statements are in the Bible. Statement #7 is God won’t give you more than you can handle. Is that in the Bible? Well, kinda.
Many people would say, “Yes, it’s in the Bible” based on 1 Corinthians 10:13 which says, “No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.”
Remember that context is king, so we need to look at the whole setting. For this verse, I would suggest going back to the beginning of the chapter (1 Corinthians 10:1-14). Paul is telling us that Israel’s bad examples are a warning for us. What’s the warning? It boils down to not becoming overconfident in our own abilities—“So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!” (v. 12).
Overconfidence exposes us to temptation. James does a really good job of defining temptation as our own evil desires that have met an opportunity to give in (James 1:13-14). When the pressure is on, perhaps I’m tempted to…
- …cut corners
- …water down the truth
- …tell a little white lie
- …justify helping myself to something that isn’t mine
- …excuse my unforgiveness
I like some of the insights we get from the Amplified Bible on 1 Corinthians 10:13.
One phrase reminds us that “no temptation or trial has come to you that is beyond human resistance and that is not adjusted and adapted” to us. God is helping us grow through those tempting times.
Another phrase from this verse says that God “can be trusted not to let you be tempted and tried and assayed beyond your ability and strength of resistance and power to endure.” God knows the perfect time and temperature of our trials to remove the impurities from our lives.
Paul’s conclusion—his “therefore”—is found in the next verse: “Therefore, my dear friends, flee from idolatry” (1 Corinthians 10:14). “Flee” means we are to take hold of ourselves to stay away from dangerous places, and “idols” are anything we put in place of God.
Notice the verse says, “God…will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear.” Sometimes I set myself up to stumble when I’m…
- …physically tired
- …spiritually drained
- …emotionally frazzled
Even in these things God will give us wisdom if we ask Him (James 1:5), but we must apply the wisdom He gives us.
So God tests me to purify and strengthen me. God will never overwhelm me or set me up for failure, but I may overwhelm myself and set myself up for failure if I’m not being careful about the idols I set up in my life.
So If you are feeling overwhelmed, if you are feeling like there’s too much, if you feel like you’re giving in to temptations, ask yourself:
- Am I getting enough sleep?
- How’s my diet?
- Have I made Bible reading and prayer a priority this week?
- Are there any relationships that are draining me?
- Have I confessed my shortcomings?
- Have I asked God for wisdom?
- Have I obeyed what God has already shown me?
God will never give me more than I can handle in His tests, but sometimes I give myself more than I can handle. It’s time to remove those idols and stumbling blocks from my life.
If you’ve missed any of the messages in our series Is That In The Bible?, I’ve shared links to all of the messages here.
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