A temptation is an act that looks appealing to an individual. It is usually used to describe acts with negative connotations and as such, tends to lead a person to regret such actions, for various reasons: legal, social, psychological (including feeling guilt), health, economic, etc. Temptation also describes the coaxing or inducing a person into committing such an act, by manipulation or otherwise of curiosity, desire or fear of loss.
Though at present used in many non-religious connotations, the term has implications deeply rooted in Judaism and the The Old Testament, starting with the story of Adam and Eve and the original sin. Many non-Western cultures had no precise equivalent until coming into contact with Europeans; for example, Jesuit missionaries in Brazil, translating the Lord's Prayer into Old Tupi, had to use the Portuguese word tentação, since Tupi had no word expressing "temptation" in that sense.
Temptation is a common recurring theme in world literature. Temptation has repercussions for even the strongest.
Temptation is that feeling of attraction to something which looks appealing to an individual.
Reported in Josiah Hotchkiss Gilbert, Dictionary of Burning Words of Brilliant Writers (1895).
|In the 1913 collection of his work, The Complete Poems of Paul Laurence Dunbar|
I done got 'uligion, honey, an' I 's happy ez a king;
Evahthing I see erbout me 's jes' lak sunshine in de spring;
An' it seems lak I do' want to do anothah blessid thing
But jes' run an' tell de neighbours, an' to shout an' pray an' sing.
I done shuk my fis' at Satan, an' I 's gin de worl' my back;
I do' want no hendrin' causes now a-both'rin' in my track;
Fu' I 's on my way to glory, an' I feels too sho' to miss.
Wy, dey ain't no use in sinnin' when 'uligion 's sweet ez dis.
Talk erbout a man backslidin' w'en he 's on de gospel way;
No, suh, I done beat de debbil, an' Temptation 's los' de day.
Gwine to keep my eyes right straight up, gwine to shet my eahs, an' see
Whut ole projick Mistah Satan 's gwine to try to wuk on me.
Listen, whut dat soun' I hyeah dah? 'tain't no one commence to sing;
It 's a fiddle; git erway dah! don' you hyeah dat blessid thing?
W'y, dat's sweet ez drippin' honey, 'cause, you knows, I draws de bow,
An' when music's sho' 'nough music, I 's de one dat's sho' to know.
W'y, I 's done de double shuffle, twell a body could n't res',
Jes' a-hyeahin' Sam de fiddlah play dat chune his level bes';
I could cut a mighty caper, I could gin a mighty fling
Jes' right now, I 's mo' dan suttain I could cut de pigeon wing.
Look hyeah, whut 's dis I 's been sayin'? whut on urf 's tuk holt o' me?
Dat ole music come nigh runnin' my 'uligion up a tree!
Cleah out wif dat dah ole fiddle, don' you try dat trick agin;
Did n't think I could be tempted, but you lak to made me sin!
|This work published before January 1, 1923 is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.|
The scene of the temptation of our Lord is generally supposed to have been the mountain of Quarantania (q.v.), "a high and precipitous wall of rock, 1,200 or 1,500 feet above the plain west of Jordan, near Jericho."
Temptation is common to all (Dan 12:10; Zech 13:9; Ps 6610; Lk 22:31, 40; Heb 11:17; James 1:12; 1 Pet 1:7; 4:12). We read of the temptation of Joseph (Gen. 39), of David (2 Sam. 24; 1 Chr. 21), of Hezekiah (2Chr 32:31), of Daniel (Dan. 6), etc. So long as we are in this world we are exposed to temptations, and need ever to be on our watch against them.
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