Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Mama Said, "There'd Be Days Like These..."

Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.” But he answered, “It is written, “‘Man shall not live by bread alone,
but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written,“‘He will command his angels concerning you,’ and “‘On their hands they will bear you up,
lest you strike your foot against a stone.’” Jesus said to him, “Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’” Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to him, “All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.” Then Jesus said to him, “Be gone, Satan! For it is written,“‘You shall worship the Lord your God
and him only shall you serve.’”Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him. Matthew 4:1-11.

Study: In the last chapter the Holy Spirit was affirming Christ and now, if you read carefully, you saw that the Holy Spirit led Jesus in the wilderness to be tempted. If the Holy Spirit is our comforter then why would he lead us into a seemingly position of failure?  However we know that Jesus came to earth to identify with man. Jesus provided us a perfect example of resisting temptation. 

By being subjected like as we but without yielding to temptation While we may find this hard to understand, Jesus left heaven to identify with mankind. To identify with him he had to be tempted like we are tempted. Without being tempted just as we are then he could not have overcome temptationThe interesting thing is that Satan tempts us with something to entice us but the underlying test is rooted in same three areas that we are tempted, physical desires, possession and power, and pride.  Notice, He always test us where we are vulnerable. 

Yet each time Jesus was tempted he overcame the temptation. Each time he said, "It is written..." exercising his power to overcome Satan and the temptation by speaking scripture. Then he denounced him, calling his bluff, and telling him to flee. Jesus modeled how we should resist him. We are to arm ourselves with the Word of God so we will recognize when we are being deceived by Satan's lies and we can resist by speaking and acting in truth. We are to obey the word of God and the Word of God will set us Free. 

Application: When we turn to Jesus we know there'd be days "like these" when we are confronted with temptation. We must remember that a person's convictions are only strong if they hold up under pressure. The temptation is not sin, but to give in is sin. If we have not experienced an opportunity to disobey then have we exercised true obedience?  How well do you hold up under pressure? 

Prayer: Father give us a thirst for your word so that we will be equipped to resist Satan and temptation. In Jesus name, Amen.