What Does it Take to Be a Godly Man? Part 2 of 2
by John Lowe
(Laurens SC, USA)
NOW OUR THIRD POINT IS THAT A GODLY MAN RESISTS TEMPTATION.
Joseph resisted the advances of Potiphar’s wife, and that’s another reason that we can consider him a godly man-he resisted temptation. At the time, he was the manager of Potiphar’s household, and as such he had great authority. He was a handsome man, and Potiphar’s wife was attracted to him. She tried to seduce him several times, but he always refused her appeals.
Temptation is a part of life for all of us. As we get older, certain temptations are easier to resist. But there will always be temptations, of one kind or another that will trip us up if we don’t resist with the help of the Holy Spirit. Satan continually seeks to lure us from the straight and narrow path. So we must turn to God for strength to defend ourselves against Satan’s temptations. The only way we can resist temptation is by having God’s power within to say no. There is a TV info spot, which I see from time-to-time, which uses the slogan, “Just Say No.” But the truth of the matter is that you can’t just say no to temptation. You need the help of the Holy Spirit; you need the power of God that He can bring to your life.
Jesus was not exempted from temptation. After He was baptized by John the Baptist, he went immediately into the wilderness, and I believe He was looking for Satan; Jesus sought out the temptation of Satan. I believe that He was tempted so that He could experience what we face. I don’t believe that there was ever a chance that He would give in to Satan’s temptations. Jesus could not fail the test, because He was the Son of God. He had more than Satan could offer. He is King of Heaven and Lord of Earth. He promised that He would never leave us or forsake us and that with every temptation that He would provide a way of escape.
How about Joseph; how was he able to resist the temptation of Potiphar’s wife. After all, she was a beautiful woman and she threw herself at him? Joseph resisted the woman’s appeal for several reasons.
FIRST, he had respect for Potiphar. Potiphar trusted him with everything, including his wife. He could not betray that trust.
SECOND, Joseph had a great sense of responsibility to God. He said, “How, then, could I commit so great a wrong and thus stand condemned before God?” (v. 9). He knew that every sin is ultimately a sin against God.
THIRD, Joseph had respect for himself, as well as Potiphar’s wife. He knew how destructive an illicit sexual affair could be. It’s a sin that can destroy both parties; it can destroy a marriage, a home, and it damages the children. Joseph wanted to be able to live with himself, and to be able to live close to God. He knew that if he gave into her advances that he would sin; and sin hurts our relationship with God. But Joseph didn’t give in, because he had the resources to face temptation, and to be victorious over the temptation.
Would you like someone to say about you, “He sure is a godly man?” Well, if you do, you have a good model. Joseph’s life is a good example for all of us. If you try to imitate his godly qualities, you will know how to be a good man.
But even better than following Joseph’s example, is having a relationship with Joseph’s God. Anyone who will open their life to God, will have the resources to be a godly person. And the only way you open up your life to God is by believing in His Son and accepting Him as your Savior. That’s how to become a child of God. That’s salvation!
Then to become a “godly man,” you must live your life by being obedient to God as his will is revealed in His Word and through the guidance of His Holy Spirit. Joseph was a “godly man;” that’s why at the end of his life, after all, that had happened to him, he could say to his brothers: “You meant it for evil, but God meant it for good.”