(Jesus said) "Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak." Matthew 26:41
It just wasn't sporting.
That pretty much sums up the case of the hunter who was arrested when he tried to register his trophy-sized black bear.
Now understand the hunter wasn't arrested for shooting the bear; he was arrested because he had tempted the bear. The week before hunting season began, the hunter was spotted in his truck -- a truck loaded with large quantities of donuts.
Now if that hunter had eaten those donuts himself, he might have gained some pounds but he never would have been arrested. But, the hunter didn't eat the donuts, he put them out to bait or tempt the bear.
He knew the bear -- being a creature of habit -- would keep coming back to the place where he had found the donuts. Then, when hunting season opened, the hunter would be waiting. Baiting the bear, tempting the bear, made the hunt ever so much easier.
But it just wasn't sporting.
Now the purpose of this devotion isn't to pick on a Pennsylvania bear hunter. He has already been tried and fined for his crime.
The reason this devotion is written is to offer a reminder, and a warning, that as far as Satan is concerned, it's always hunting season. To make his hunt easier, he's fully prepared to put out the particular bait which is going to tempt you.
Now, I don't know what your particular temptation might be. I don't know, but he probably does. He has studied your habits; he has evaluated you and wants your hide (actually, your soul).
Unsporting, yes, but he is the devil and he doesn't care.
This is why we need somebody who is willing to stand up for us. By the Heavenly Father's will, that person is His Son, Jesus. Beyond logic or reason, God's Son died to save us. Now, because of His successful sacrifice, all who believe are forgiven, saved, and promised a life free from the eternal ravages of sin and Satan.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, the devil isn't sporting. He never has been. Help us avoid his snares and traps and keep us safe in the grace which comes to us through Jesus our Savior. In His Name, I pray. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries