No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it (1 Corinthians 10:13).
God is faithful. What a wonderful reminder! God will never give up on what he has begun, he will never renege on any promise he has made.
Because God will never give up, we ought to never give up. And yet God’s faithfulness, we are reminded in this very verse of Scripture, does not preclude his allowing trials into our lives. The word “temptation” can carry the idea either of temptation toward sin specifically, or of trials in general. Although God is faithful, and although he does promise not to give us more than we can bear, our faithful God does allow weighty temptations to come our way.
For this reason, it is helpful to consider what our responsibility is when we face these temptations. God will be faithful. We can know that for sure. But what is our role when it comes to temptations?
We must trust what we cannot see or feel: that God is faithfully continuing with us, even when we are hurting deeply.
First, this verse is encouraging us to trust in God’s faithfulness. The very reassurance that God will not allow any temptation to overwhelm us implies that Christians will struggle with feelings of being overwhelmed and forsaken in the midst of life’s difficulties. Yet we must trust what we cannot see or feel: that God is faithfully continuing with us, even when we are hurting deeply.
God has proven his love and wisdom and power to save us, in giving his Son Jesus for us. We ought always to trust God, no matter what temptations may seek to overcome us.
Second, we are responsible to bear up under the temptation (since he promises it will not be more than we can endure), and to seek patiently for a way to escape it if possible. We must patiently endure as long as God is allowing any difficulty to touch our lives, and we must escape its power by every biblical means.
Our job is to trust in God’s faithfulness, and then faithfully bear whatever God lays on our shoulders.
We do not pray, “Lead us not into temptation,” and then linger around sin as long as possible. We run from the temptation as best we can, by God’s grace and with his Spirit’s help. We do pray, “Give us daily bread,” yet we must be willing to endure hunger if need be for the cause of Christ.
God will be faithful, and God promises to not give us more than we can bear. Our job, therefore, is to trust in God’s faithfulness, and then faithfully bear whatever God lays on our shoulders.