by John Owen
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"Watch and pray, that ye enter not into
temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak" (Matt.
26:41). These words, which Jesus spoke to his disciples in the garden of
Gethsemane, serve as the foundation for John Owen's treatise Of
Temptation. Owen preached on the subject of temptation frequently
his many years of service as the dean and vice chancellor of Christ
Church in Oxford--Of Temptation is the culmination of his
the subject. In his treatise, Owen addresses the nature and power of
temptation, the risk of entering into it, and the means of avoiding its
danger. Owen defines temptation as anything with the ability to entice
the Christian's mind or heart away from obedience to God and redirect it
towards sin. Owen warns us that our power is not strong enough to
protect us from temptation; rather, it is by God's power of preservation
that we are saved. As Christians, we can guard ourselves against
temptation in part by praying for God's power to help us resist it. His
treatise teaches Christians how to recognize the threat of temptation
and protect themselves against it.
CCEL Staff Writer