The only problem is the Bible doesn’t teach that sin comes from temptation. Sin comes from desire.
James 1:13-15 NIV When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.
We don’t sin because we are tempted to sin. We sin because we desire sin. In fact, without the desire for sin temptation cannot even exist.
Think about it this way. I can’t tempt you to eat a bowl of gravel. Why? Because you don’t desire gravel as food. Calling that a temptation would be ludicrous.
But if, somehow, there was something off inside of you that gave you an unnatural desire for gravel as food, then a bowl of gravel could be tempting.
That is how sin works. We have broken desires. Like the desire to eat a bowl of gravel, our broken hearts want all kinds of messed up things. This allows sin to come to us with all sorts of temptations. Sin’s effectiveness here is not based on how well we are tempted. Instead, its strategy is dependent upon our desires.
Trying to fight temptation without changing desires is pointless. However, the opposite is also true. If our desires change temptation will be pointless. So what we need is not new tactics on how to avoid temptation. What we need are ways to change our desires.
Here's What Works Against Sin
Just saying no to sin, depriving ourselves of our desires, and trying to whip our bodies into shape will never work. That is because it cannot stop you from indulging your flesh. That’s because “no” isn’t powerful enough. You have to change the way you think.
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
Colossians 3:1-4 NIV
Editor's Note: Some content from 3 Lies About Fighting Sin by David Bowden, adapted from his book Rewire Your Heart: Replace Your Desire for Sin with Desire for God,