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Throughout history, on the eve of a new adventure or at the end of an old one, great temptations and great disasters frequently happen. Jesus, for example, having just been baptised, found himself thrust into a mad stream of temptations and—just prior to the crucifixion—begged his brothers to pray with him in the garden. It was with ‘loud cries and tears’ we are told, that he persevered and ‘learned obedience’ and was ‘made perfect through his sufferings.’* So watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation, especially when you have just won some sort of battle, been awarded a prize, fallen in love, are about to marry or take a holiday. The fact is that all those who have ever achieved anything significant in this universe have tended to say the same thing: ‘This is not just a matter of being a clever creator, this is about facing something malevolent that’s waiting patiently for you to be impetuous, impatient or impure. The Greeks put it this way, ‘Those whom the gods would destroy they first make drunk with power.’

 

* Hebrews 5:6,7

 

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