Summary: This is the second message about the temptation of Jesus in the wilderness dealing with the devil offering Jesus the kingdoms of the world if He fell down and worshiped the devil. The focus of the message is on the dangers of shortcuts.
This message was inspired by a couple of sermons that I read here on Sermon Central. I do not remember who wrote those sermons, sorry! As is often the case with my sermons I did not write out the closing of this message. After reading the message the Holy Spirit should be able to give you an appropriate closing.
Gospel of Luke 4:1-13
We are in a message series on the Gospel of Luke
The word “gospel” literally means “good news”
So, you could say that this series is about “The good news of Luke”
What exactly is this good news?
Simply put, it’s the life story of Jesus Christ
Jesus Christ is, without a shadow of a doubt, the most influential person who has ever existed
Even if you’re not a Christian, or even a particularly religious person, you cannot deny this fact
No one life has affected the whole of humanity more than Jesus Christ
Since He has affected the world so deeply you would think that all of us would know a lot about Him, but unfortunately that is not true
Many claim to know about Jesus, but in reality few people really do
The Gospel of Luke details the events of Jesus’ life from His birth to His death on the cross and subsequent resurrection
Luke is written by a Gentile to a Gentile audience
Since the vast majority of us listening to this message are Gentiles I think it’s very appropriate that we study this Gospel
As we jump into our passage today in Luke 4 we need to remember that Jesus had just been baptized by John the Baptist – that’s what our message was about last week – and was ready to fulfill His purpose
But before He began His ministry something else had to take place
Luke 4:1-13 Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the desert, 2 where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry. 3 The devil said to him, "If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread." 4 Jesus answered, "It is written: 'Man does not live on bread alone.'" 5 The devil led him up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. 6 And he said to him, "I will give you all their authority and splendor, for it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. 7 So if you worship me, it will all be yours." 8 Jesus answered, "It is written: 'Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.'" 9 The devil led him to Jerusalem and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. "If you are the Son of God," he said, "throw yourself down from here. 10 For it is written: "'He will command his angels concerning you to guard you carefully; 11 they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.'" 12 Jesus answered, "It says: 'Do not put the Lord your God to the test.'" 13 When the devil had finished all this tempting, he left him until an opportune time.
Here we read the story of Jesus’ 3 temptations
Last week we took a look at the first temptation – turning stone into bread
This was basically a temptation of the flesh – focusing only on the temporary
We need to remember that although our physical needs are important, if we only focus on our physical needs we will starve ourselves spiritually
If you missed that message, you can grab a copy in the back before you leave
Today we’re going to take a look at the second temptation of Jesus
Before we do that let me mention that this story of the 3 temptations of Jesus is also mentioned in the Gospel of Matthew, however Matthew and Luke differ slightly
In Matthew the temptations of Jesus are in a different order -
Both Matthew and Luke have the first temptation as the same, but Matthew has the second and third temptations reversed
So, what does this mean?
There are some theologians that have written several pages on the topic, but I think I can sum up the gist of the meaning in two words, “so what?”
I don’t think it makes one lick of difference what order the temptations happened in and it does not change my faith in God or in His Word one bit
Don’t get hung up on stupid arguments like this one – it really doesn’t matter
Now, on to the story of the second temptation as recorded in Luke 4