Note: The words "tempted,"
"tried" and "tested" have slightly different meanings,
yet they all refer to challenges to our faith. Their main
difference has to do with the source of that challenge. But God
uses only the last two to strengthen our faith and to test our willingness to
trust and follow Him. For example:
"And you shall remember that the Lord your God
led you all the way these forty years in the wilderness, to
humble you and test you, to know what was in your heart, whether you
would keep His commandments or not."
While God will tests
our faith, He doesn't
"Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has
been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the
Lord has promised to those who love Him. Let no one say
when he is tempted, I am tempted by God; for God cannot be
tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. But each
one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and
enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth
to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death."
Satan (also called the devil, dragon, serpent, deceiver, tempter and
murderer) is often the
instigator of those evil desires and cravings (as is also our fallen
human nature with its lusts cravings):
"...war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought
with the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought, but they did not prevail, nor was a place found for them
in heaven any longer. So the great dragon was cast out, that
serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who
deceives the whole world; he was cast to the earth, and his
angels were cast out with him."
our hearts and exposes
faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and
he who had received the promises offered up his only begotten
"... the Lord said to Moses,
'Behold, I will rain bread
from heaven for you. And the people shall go out and gather a
certain quota every day, that I may test them, whether they
will walk in My law or not.'”
"And Moses said to the people, 'Do not fear; for God has
come to test you, and that His fear may be before you, so
that you may not sin.'"
"I speak not by commandment, but I am testing the
sincerity of your love by the diligence of others."
"But as we have been approved by God to be entrusted
with the gospel, even so we speak, not as pleasing men, but
God who tests our hearts. For neither at any time did
we use flattering words, as you know, nor a cloak for
covetousness— God is witness. Nor did we seek glory
from men.... But we were
gentle among you, just as a nursing mother cherishes her own
children. So, affectionately longing for you, we were well
pleased to impart to you not only the gospel of God, but also
our own lives, because you had become dear to us...."
Satan lies and deceives
(tempts us to believe his lies)
to this end I also wrote, that I might put you to the test,
whether you are obedient in all things. Now whom you
forgive anything, I also forgive. For if indeed I have
forgiven anything, I have forgiven that one for your sakes in
the presence of Christ, lest Satan should take advantage of
us; for we are not ignorant of his devices."
2 Corinthians 2:7-11
"...the whole world is under the sway of the evil one."
"...you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that
dreamer of [deceptive] dreams, for the Lord your God is testing you to
know whether you love the Lord your God with all your heart
and with all your soul."
"He laid hold of the dragon, that serpent of old, who is the
Devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years; and he
cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a
seal on him, so that he should deceive the nations no more
till the thousand years were finished."
Yet, before the beginning of time, our sovereign God created the
devil -- well aware of the trouble he would cause in the world:
Lord has made everything for its purpose,
even the wicked for the day of trouble [doom, disaster or
also tells us to test
(search or check)
our own hearts
"Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test
yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is
in you?—unless indeed you are disqualified."
[examine] all things;
hold fast what is good.
Abstain from every form of evil."
Such tests expose sin in
they tested and provoked the Most High God, and did not keep His testimonies..."
"Behold, I have refined you, but not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction.
For My own sake, for My own sake, I will do it; for how should My name be profaned?"
"I, the Lord, search the heart,
I test the mind,
Even to give every man according to his ways,
According to the fruit of his doings."
Benefits from God's tests
"My brethren, count it all joy when
you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith
produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that
you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. "
"In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little
while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials
[temptations], that the genuineness of your faith, being much
more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by
fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the
revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love."
“Beware that you do not forget the Lord your God by not keeping
His commandments, His judgments, and His statutes which I
command you today, lest—when you have eaten and are
full, and have built beautiful houses and dwell in them.... when
your heart is lifted up, and you forget the Lord... who led you through
that great and terrible wilderness. ... that He might humble you and
that He might test
you, to do you good in the end— then you say in your
heart, ‘My power and the might of my hand have gained me this
"He knows the way that I take;
when He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold."
We need to
test (check &
discern) what we hear
"Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but
test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have
gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the
flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess
that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And
this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was
coming, and is now already in the world."
“I know your works, your labor, your patience, and that
you cannot bear those who are evil. And you have tested
[tried] those who say they are apostles and are not, and have found
them liars; and you have persevered and have patience, and
have labored for My name’s sake and have not become weary.
Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left
your first love." Revelation 2:2-4
(but not deceived)
by the devil
"Do not fear any of those things which you are about to
suffer. Indeed, the devil is about to throw some of you into
prison, that you may be tested [tried], and you will have tribulation
ten days. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the
crown of life." Revelation 2:10
"Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also
will keep you from the hour of trial [temptation] which shall come upon the whole world, to
test [try] those who dwell on the earth."
Jesus was tempted by the devil
Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to
be tempted by the devil. And when He had fasted forty days
and forty nights, afterward He was hungry. Now when the
tempter came to Him, he said, 'If You are the Son of God,
command that these stones become bread.'”
"Immediately the Spirit drove Him into the wilderness.
And He was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted by
Satan, and was with the wild beasts; and the angels
ministered to Him."
"And Jesus answered and said to him, 'It has been said, ‘You
shall not tempt the Lord your God.’ Now when the devil had ended every temptation, he
departed from Him until an opportune time."
"...in all things He had to be made like His brethren,
that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things
pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the
people. For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to
aid those who are tempted."
"For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize
with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are,
yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the
throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help
in time of need."
are all tempted to disobey God
"Now these things became our examples, to the intent that we
should not lust after evil things as they also lusted. And do not become idolaters as were some of them. As it is
written, 'The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up
to play.' Nor let us commit sexual immorality, as some
of them did, and in one day twenty-three thousand fell; nor let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and
were destroyed by serpents; nor complain, as some of
them also complained, and were destroyed by the destroyer.
Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the
ends of the ages have come.
"Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he
fall. No temptation has overtaken you except such as is
common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you
to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation
will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to
"...if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are
spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness,
considering yourself lest you also be tempted."
"...we told you before when we were with you that we would suffer
tribulation.... For this
reason, when I could no longer endure it, I sent to know your
faith, lest by some means the tempter had tempted you, and
four labor might be in vain."
trusting God, many "test" Him
"...your fathers tested
[tempted] Me, tried Me,
and saw My works forty years. Therefore I was angry with that
"...they asked Him, saying, 'Teacher, we know that You
say and teach rightly, and You do not show personal favoritism,
but teach the way of God in truth: 'Is it lawful for us to pay
taxes to Caesar or not?'
'But He perceived their craftiness, and
said to them, 'Why do you test Me?”
"...the Pharisees came out and began to dispute with
Him, seeking from Him a sign from heaven, testing Him."
"Peter answered her, 'Tell me whether you sold the land for so
She said, 'Yes, for so much.' Then Peter said to her, 'How is it that you have agreed
together to test the Spirit of the Lord? Look, the feet of
those who have buried your husband are at the door, and they
will carry you out.' Then immediately she fell down at his feet
and breathed her last."
for disciples who refuse to yield to temptations
"Others were tortured,
not accepting deliverance, that they
might obtain a better resurrection. Still others had trial
of mockings and scourgings, yes, and of chains and
imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, were
tempted, were slain with the sword. They wandered
about in sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute,
afflicted, tormented— of whom the world was not worthy.
They wandered in deserts and mountains, in dens and caves of
"Blessed are you when men hate you,
and when they exclude you,
And revile you, and cast out your name as evil for the Son of Man’s sake.
Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is
great in heaven." Luke 6:22-23
"Blessed are those servants whom the master, when he comes,
will find watching."
"Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud
of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin
which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance
the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the
author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that
was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame,
and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God."