4 Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2 After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. 3 The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.” 4 Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” 5 Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. 6 “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written: “‘He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’” 7 Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’” 8 Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. 9 “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.” 10 Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’” 11 Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.
It strikes me that not once in this passage does Jesus try to resist temptation by his own strength. How many New Years resolutions have been broken by a lack of self control? How many lives are ruled by addictions that cannot be tamed? I know at times I feel powerless to resist temptation. But that’s probably because I am. Jesus knows the only power capable of overcoming temptation is the power of God. Jesus doesn’t say ‘I am better’ or ‘stronger ‘ he uses scripture- the living word of God to face his temptation. Jesus doesn’t overcome – God does. When faced with temptation I need to be like Jesus – ready with scripture and the power of God to face down the opposition.
This passage gives us a glimpse of what was coming in terms God’s victory over sin and death. I want to live a life of victory and freedom, not a life of defeat.
Jesus help me to be just like you. Thank you that you have shown us how to live. Help me to know the mind of God and to have wisdom in every situation. Holy Spirit fill me with your power. In your mighty name. Amen
Written by Christine Knight