Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempts he any man:…
1. Man is apt to transfer the guilt of his own miscarriages.
(1):Beware of these vain pretences. Silence and owning of guilt is far more becoming; God is most glorified when the creatures lay aside their shifts.
(2) Learn that all these excuses are vain and frivolous, they will not hold with God.
2. Creatures, rather than not transfer their guilt, will cast it upon God Himself.
(1) Partly because by casting it upon God the soul is most secure. When He that is to punish sin beareth the guilt of it, the soul is relieved from much horror and bondage; therefore, in the way of faith, God's transacting our sin upon Christ is most satisfying to the spirit (Isaiah 53:6).
(2) Partly through a wicked desire that is in men to blemish the being of God. Man naturally hateth God; and our spite is shown by profaning His glory, and making it become vile in our thoughts; for since we cannot raze out the sense of the Deity, we would destroy the dread and reverence of it. We charge God with our evils and sins divers ways —
(a) When we blame His providence, the state of things, the times, the persons about us, the circumstances of Providence, as the laying of tempting objects in our way, our condition, &c., as if God's disposing of our interests were a calling us to sin: thus Adam (Genesis 3:12).
(b) By ascribing sin to the defect and faint operation of the Divine grace. Men will say they could do no otherwise; they had no more grace given them by God (Proverbs 19:3).
(c) When men lay all their miscarriages upon their fate, and the unhappy stars that shone at their birth, these are but blind flings at God Himself veiled under reflections upon the creature.
(d) When men are angry they know not why.
(e) Most grossly, when you think God useth any suggestion to the soul to persuade and incline it to evil.
(f) When you have an ill understanding and conceit of His decrees, as if they did necessitate you to sin. Men will say, "Who can help it? God would have it so" — as if that were an excuse for all.
3. God is so immutably good and holy that He is above the power of a temptation. Men soon warp and vary, but He cannot be tempted. And generally, we deal with God as if He could be tempted and wrought to a compliance with our corrupt ends, as Solomon speaketh of sacrifice offered with an evil mind (Proverbs 21:27); that is, to gain the favour of heaven in some evil undertaking and design.
4. The Author of all good cannot be the author of sin.
Parallel VersesKJV: Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: