Summary: Many people seem to think that God is randomly confronted with different trials and than randomly transforms them into something good in our lives.

Matthew 4

God is in Control (4:1)

1. Jesus “was led up by the Spirit…”

- God is in control here.

- This was all apart of God’s plan.

- God doesn’t transform trials into good.

- Many people seem to think that God is randomly confronted with different trials and than randomly transforms them into something good in our lives.

- God wills trials and temptations from the beginning. He has good planned from the beginning and allows a trial or temptation to birth the good.

- God will allow trials for specific reasons such as testing your faith, strengthening your faith, and sometimes to be a witness (James 1).

??? Share an example

2. “…to be tempted by the devil.”

- God cannot be tempted, nor does He tempt.

- Satan can only tempt you in the things you lust after (Heart issue).

Feasting on God (4:2)

1. “…after He had fasted forty day and nights, He then became hungry.”

??? What are the key words in this verse? (After, then)

- Jesus is communing with His Father.

??? If Jesus spent time with the Father, how much more important is it for us?

- Fasting is really a feast.

- When we truly feast on God and His word, we will be too full to eat of this world.

- When we truly feast on God, we don’t feel hunger for physical food.

Jesus tempted by the tempter (4:3-11)

1. Stones to Bread (4:3-4)

- The temptation is to have an improper dependence.

- Satan is saying, “Depend on yourself, not God.”

- This temptation sounds a lot like the one in the Garden of Eden in Genesis 3. It’s a subtle suggestion to put His physical needs before Spiritual.

- The implied suggestion is “Use Your divine powers to meet Your own needs.”

- When we put our physical needs in front of our spiritual needs, we sin.

- When we allow circumstances to dictate our actions instead of following God’s will, we sin.

??? What type of circumstances do we sometimes allow to dictate our actions instead of following God’s will?

- Jesus could have turned the stones into bread, but He would have been exercising His powers independently of the Father; and He came to obey the Father (John 5:30; 6:38).

- Jesus replies by quoting Deuteronomy 8:3, “Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.”

- It is important to know that Jesus wasn’t merely quoting scripture. Merely quoting scripture will not defeat Satan.

- Even the demons know scripture.

- Jesus just came out of communion with His Father for 40 days and nights and He was consumed with the Word of God.

- When we consume ourselves with the word of God and spend time in the presence of God we will be able to be more than conquers against Satan.

- Jesus relationship with the father is what allowed Him to conquer Satan not merely quoting scripture.

- Jesus was able to defeat Satan because He was full on God.

2. Jump off the temple (4:5-7)

- This temptation is also to have an improper dependence.

- Satan quotes scripture to try and temp Jesus to jump off of a temple about 500 feet above the kindred valley.

- Jesus reply was from Deuteronomy 6:16, “You shall not tempt the Lord your God.”

- We tempt the Lord when we force Him into a position to work miracles on our behalf.

??? What are some examples of some ways that we may be tempting God?

- An example of this would be the diabetic who refuses to take their medication and says that the trust the Lord will take care of it.

3. Shortcut to the Kingdom (4:8-10)

- This temptation is improper compromise.

- Satan offers Jesus all of the kingdoms of the world if Jesus would only bow down and worship him. As the prince of the world, Stan could do this (John 12:31; 14:30).

- Jesus knew that He would suffer before He entered into His Glory (Luke 24:26; 1 Peter 1:11; 5:1).

- If He bowed down and worshipped Satan He could enjoy all of the glory without enduring the suffering.

- Worshipping the creature instead of the creator is the lie that rules our world today (Romans 1:24-25).

??? What are some ways in which our world worships the creature instead of the creator?

- There are no shortcuts to the will of God. If we want to share in the glory, we must also share in the suffering (1 Peter 5:10).

??? What are some examples of how we might be trying to speed up God’s plan?

- The Father had already promised Jesus the kingdom! Jesus could have said, “You bow down and worship Me! The kingdom is Mine!”

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