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Summary: Lessons I learned about temptation and how to react to temptation based on Jesus Christ’s experience with temptation as recorded in the Gospel of Luke.

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Lessons learned from Luke’s Account of the Temptation of Jesus Christ

A mother told her son not to go swimming. However, when he came into the house his mother noticed that his hair and bathing suit were wet. "Johnnie," his mother scolded, "I told you not to go swimming." "I couldn’t help it mom," he defended himself. "The water looked so good." "But why did you take your bathing suit with you?"

"In case I was tempted."

A 4 year old was caught by her mom standing in a chair eating cookies, after she had been told not to, here is how she explained the situation, "Mom it’s not my fault, I just climbed up to smell them, and my tooth got caught."

Read text – Luke 4:1-13

I. Characteristics of temptation – If we know what temptation is and how it works, we will be better equipped to handle temptation as Jesus Christ did – as a victorious overcomer!

1. Temptation is universal.

It can happen even when we are totally in the will of God living life led by the Spirit.

Luke 4:1 – “Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the desert…”

1 Corinthians 10:13 - No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.

Temptation happens to all of us! It happened to He who was perfection! Don’t mistake temptation for a spiritual weakness or deficiency of some sort.

I had an old pastor who used to say “when the caravan’s a’movin, the dogs are a’barkin.”

Instead of our tendency as Christians to beat our chest and cry out when temptation presents itself to us, let us be the writer of James 1:2-3 when he wrote:

“My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials,

knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.”

2. Temptation is strategic. It is employed strategically against Christians.

Luke 4:2-3 -

“…being tempted for forty days by the devil. And in those days He ate nothing, and afterward, when they had ended, He was hungry.

And the devil said to Him, "If You are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread."

Temptation will hit us where it hurts the most. Our temptations therefore may be unique among each other, but we must remember that verse we have already referred to –

1 Corinthians 10:13 - No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.

God will not allow us to be overwhelmed in our temptation if we but lean on Him. If we rely on ourselves to get ourselves out of the “jam” of temptation, then we will fall every time.

3. Temptation is seductive.

A man and his wife were shopping at a mall and a shapely young woman in a short, form-fitting dress strolled by. The man’s eyes followed her. Without looking up from the item she was examining, his wife asked, "Was it worth the trouble you’re in?"


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