Motives deal with how to find the strength to put your strategies into practice. Here are three important motives…
We are servants of God
“My master has no concern about anything in the house, and he has put everything that he has in my charge’” (Gen. 39:8). Notice Joseph’s reasoning: “I am a servant; I am not a free agent drifting around from one thing to another at the impulse of my own heart. I have a master. He has trusted me with responsibility. I will be loyal to him.”
All sin is a big deal
“How then can I do this great wickedness and sin…?” (39:9). Joseph calls sin by its proper name. The world is always coining fresh language to make sin more acceptable. Instead of describing what Joseph was tempted to do as an act of adultery, people today would call it ‘an affair’ or ‘a fling.’ Change the language, they say, and it doesn’t sound like such a big deal.
If Satan can persuade you that the sin to which you are tempted is not a big deal, then it won’t be long until you fall into temptation. What is the sin to which you are tempted? Call it by its proper name. Is it pride? Envy? Adultery? The Bible says these things are an abomination to the Lord. Joseph calls the sin to which he is tempted ‘this great wickedness.’ He sees and feels the sinfulness of sin, and that acts as a defense in his soul.
All sin is against God
“How then can I do this great wickedness and sin against God?” (39:9). The great motive for the Christian in the battle against temptation is remembering your love for God. That means His frown would be your greatest dread, and His smile would be your greatest delight.
If you love the Lord, then grieving the Father who loves you, sinning against the Son who died for you, and resisting the Holy Spirit who lives within you will seem like a fearful thing.
Which of these motives are you downplaying right now? How so?