There are many themes shared throughout history and one source in particular which shares multiple themes is the Bible. One particular theme to compare and contrast with other stories is temptation. What is Temptation? It is an act that looks appealing to an individual. The theme of temptation is universally talked about in the Bible. It is also shared in movies and is prevalent in every person’s day to day life. A few stories to discuss that share the theme of temptation in the bible are the book of Genesis, the second book of Samuel, the book of Judges and the books of Luke and Matthew. Although there are so many other stories outside of the Bible and movies that portray the theme of temptation, the stories below really capture the underlying theme of temptation.
First let’s take a look at those who did not respond well to temptation. The most famous of all is the book of Genesis, The Fall. Eve was lured by the serpent who symbolized Satan, to eat the forbidden fruit. Genesis 3:6 says, "When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it." Because Eve yielded to temptation and shared the forbidden fruit with her husband, they were thrown out of the Garden of Eden and our struggle with sin began.
Another story portraying the theme of temptation is shown in Genesis 37, 39-46, The story of Joseph. Joseph was bought to be a slave by an officer of the pharaoh named Potiphar. Potiphar had Joseph oversee every duty in his house. Joseph was handsome in appearance so Potiphar’s wife was attracted to him. She attempted to seduce him every day by telling him to “lie with me” but Joseph refused to give in, in this case overcoming the power of temptation. Joseph understood the power of temptation and the repercussions it could bring. She becomes angry due to his rejection, so in spitefulness one day she runs out of her house in tears, yelling out that Joseph had raped her. Joseph is then thrown into prison. Though he did not commit the acts brought upon him and did what was hard but right, he was still punished because of the wicked lie told against him.
Sexual temptation is one of the strongest temptations there are to man as well as to women, but more so to man. Unlike Joseph who overcame the temptation in the second book of Samuel it talks about King David and how he gives into temptation. Women were a tempting lure to men such as King David. We read that he saw the bathing beauty, Bathsheba, and committed adultery. Then in an attempt to cover his sin, David planned to have Bathsheba's husband killed. Another story that shares the theme of temptation is in the Book of Judges where Samson was lured by the deceiving Delilah and the deception led to his imprisonment by the Philistines, who also blinded him.
The story of The Odyssey displays the theme of temptation as well. Odysseus and his men were desperate to return home, but this desire was constantly in conflict with the many temptations and pleasures that the world offered. The temptations they encountered throughout their journey can coincide with the temptations experienced by individuals during this present day and time. The first example is the temptation of the Lotos Eaters. The Lotos Eaters did not desire ill will or harm toward Odysseus and his men, but simply offered them the Lotos flower. If eaten, this flower caused the men to forget all their hardships and their voyage home. It simply gave them a feeling of peace and contentment. This temptation is the equivalent of the temptation of today’s drugs. Many people use drugs to experience a “high” that allows them to escape from reality. It gives them a temporary feeling of peace and contentment. However, this temptation usually holds its victims in bondage through its power of addiction. The abuser loses his sense of...
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