Matthew 4:1-11 (NIV 2010)
1 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.
Jesus was tempted by Satan in the wilderness while he was fasting for 40 days. Matthew lists three ways that Jesus was tempted (all familiar to what we may face today). Jesus demonstrates both the importance and effectiveness of the application of Scripture to overcome temptation.
First, Jesus, hungry from fasting, was tempted to make bread for himself. Perhaps Jesus would doubt and question if God would provide food? But no, Jesus feasted on the living Word (Deut. 8:3) to depend on God, focusing on God’s purpose.
Second, Jesus was tempted to dare God to rescue him, to test God. Would God protect him? But Jesus once again feasted on the living Word (Deut. 6:16) to not test God, focusing on God’s plan.
Lastly, Jesus was tempted to bow down and worship Satan above God. But we find Jesus refusing to and feasting on the living Word (Deut. 6:13) for no compromise, focusing on God’s, the one and only true Lord.
Responding to the Transmitted Message:
This time of testing showed who Jesus really was - the Son of God. He was tempted in every way, and yet overcame all of it. We too, face temptations every day. As we live LIVE being led by the Spirit, let us also be alert and ready with the sword of the Spirit, the Word of God. May we transform our minds with God’s truth so that we will not give into the tempting lies of the enemy.