Summary: Matthew shows how we can overcome sin by not making the same mistakes that the Israelites did and by following the example of Jesus in dealing with temptation.
FOLLOWING JESUS TO THE WILDERNESS
FOCUS: THE TEXT SHOWS HOW CHRIST DEFEATED SATAN’S TEMPTATIONS IN THE WILDERNESS.
FUNCTION: TO SHOWS THE HEARERS HOW JESUS IS THE PERFECT EXAMPLE IN DEFEATING SATAN’S TEMPTATIONS.
TEXT: LUKE 4:1-13
Mark Thornton stood 6 feet with his black pin striped suit. This was his 20th year as a Dell engineer. He was the model of success. He drove a BMW, lived in the newest subdivision in town, and had a beautiful wife. He was popular within the community. Mark was a hardworking man with strong religious values. He was a natural leader in every environment.
This is why when there was a new opening for the district supervisor over engineering matrix he was the first man on his boss’s list. His salary would double, his perks would increase, and his benefits would skyrocket. This was a great opportunity for a great man. So Mark accepted quickly.
He accepted knowing that he would be away from his wife and children fourteen days a month. He accepted knowing that he could buy that new Z49 BMW convertible. He accepted knowing that he was going to appear more successful than his brother. He accepted knowing that this promotion would make him look like a more successful man. And he liked that.
Chris Bishop stood 5’11 in his dirty clothes. He has worked as a contractor for the last 10 years. For having no High School education, he has become very financially well off. He was likable, charming, and funning. He could fix anything. His wife loved him and his children wanted to be like him. He was known in the community as a contractor that got the job done on budget and on time.
But Chris had a secret that no one knew about. If this secret ever got out it would ruin his business and his reputation. This secret would destroy everything that Chris has worked for in the last ten years. Chris cut costs on his two by fours and he cut costs on his insulation. Chris would tell his customers that he used the best quality two by fours when he was only using returned two by fours. Also, he said he was using the top density insulation he was using the cheapest insulation he could get. He wanted to get rich and this was an easy shortcut.
Sue Bates was a beautiful 29-year-old lady. She had long brown flowing hair and dark green eyes. She wore a size four dress and stood 5’6. She was the woman that women love to hate because she was so glamorous but she also was the woman that women love because she was so sweet. She was faithful Christian with a strong Christian man as a husband. Everything in life was going her way because her husband was the up and coming rich banker and she was the toast of the social circle.
This was until December 14 when her husband died in a car accident. Her life changed. Five months later she made a deal with God. She wanted to get married again and told God that she was giving Him six months to bring a new man into her life. If God did not bring her a new man she was going to take a break from the church to think about life. She knew that God loved her and he would provide. She was just testing God in her mind to prove His faithfulness to her.
Luke 4:1-13 reads like this. “And Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led about by the Spirit in the wilderness for forty days, being tempted by the devil. And He ate nothing during those days; and when they had ended, He became hungry. And the devil said to Him, "If You are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread." And Jesus answered him, "It is written, ’MAN SHALL NOT LIVE ON BREAD ALONE.’" And he led Him up and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said to Him, "I will give You all this domain and its glory; for it has been handed over to me, and I give it to whomever I wish. "Therefore if You worship before me, it shall all be Yours." And Jesus answered and said to him, "It is written, ’YOU SHALL WORSHIP THE LORD YOUR GOD AND SERVE HIM ONLY.’" And he led Him to Jerusalem and had Him stand on the pinnacle of the temple, and said to Him, "If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down from here; for it is written, ’HE WILL GIVE HIS ANGELS CHARGE CONCERNING YOU TO GUARD YOU,’ and, ’ON their HANDS THEY WILL BEAR YOU UP, LEST YOU STRIKE YOUR FOOT AGAINST A STONE.’" And Jesus answered and said to him, "It is said, ’YOU SHALL NOT PUT THE LORD YOUR GOD TO THE TEST.’" And when the devil had finished every temptation, he departed from Him until an opportune time.”