Summary: The Temptation of Christ and how he overcame for us.
The Famous Temptation of Christ
Luke 4 verses 1-13 relate the temptation of Jesus.
Luke is very interested in showing us that Jesus was not only
the “Son of God” but also the “son of man.”
Our Christianity is no good and our ministry is not effective if it will not stand up to temptation. Jesus shows us how to do it.
Here he was at thirty years old, freshly baptized and full of the Spirit, just beginning his ministry and going away in the desert for his “quiet time” of fasting and prayer…but the devil was there!
See, the devil not only wants to kick you when you are down, he likes to topple you down from your moments of joy and victory, too.
Can anyone relate already?
Have you ever tried to have a quiet time every day?
Unless you attempt it before daybreak you will certainly get interrupted and never manage to get back to your plan.
But Jesus had had 40 days of success with His plan and it was getting tough by now to stick with it. In fact, “40” in the Bible refers to a time of completion, such as the 40 days involving Noah and the Ark, and the 40 years of the Israelites wandering in the wilderness.
So maybe Jesus was on his way out, and then Satan came to Him at a very weak moment physically.
The first temptation Jesus faced was to satisfy his hunger.
Since Jesus had not eaten for 40 days the devil challenged him to turn the stones into bread.
Just looking down at those little smooth loaf-shaped stones must have made Jesus really hungry.
He knew he could produce food to feed not only himself but multitudes with as many rocks as were found in Jerusalem!
He would have been politically popular with this “feed the hungry” program.
Perfect living then and now is associated with plenty of food and wine.
Remember the “Promise Land” was said to be flowing with milk and honey.
But he remembered his ministry was to feed the people the true and living bread of life and he would not settle for a mere physical ministry.
He said, “Man cannot live by bread alone…
This is interesting to me because many folks can quote this part of what Jesus replied but they have no idea what the rest of that sentence is.
Could you complete the sentence without looking back in your Bible?
It is “Man cannot live by bread alone,
but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the Father.”
The first sin in the world was yielding to the temptation to choose food
(the forbidden fruit) instead of listening to what God had said.
We still tend to just focus on the physical provision and do not comprehend or attempt to satisfy the spiritual hunger pangs in our lives.
A current trend in weight loss plans is to try to discover why you overeat. The diet gurus say we have a deeper problem we are trying to mask with the comfort of food. A spiritual emptiness can never be filled except by the Spirit of Truth Himself.
Man’s most urgent need is not physical, yet that is what our prayer requests always center upon. We need to focus on the deep spiritual hollowness in our souls.
II Satan could not succeed again on the food temptation now, so he tried another angle.
“Worship me and I will give you authority over all the kingdoms of the world.”
Jesus had been stripped of all his heavenly splendor and authority when he entered this physical body. He was not used to being “just one of us”…
It was tempting to take back authority and give Satan the boot…..
Compare this to being a retired CEO. Now all of a sudden you are just one of the many folks living here on the lake. You are not in charge and no one just automatically moves to do your bidding. You find yourself obeying rules instead of making them. It would be tempting to get back into the game. What’s a little shady deal going to hurt if it gets you back in the money and power politics?
Again Jesus remembered that his purpose in coming was to teach us to worship and serve “only the Lord your God.”
He must wait to have his authority and worship restored at a later time after fulfilling this earthly mission.
You see, that is one of the devil’s most clever tools he uses against us.
He tempts us to take NOW what the Lord has planned for us to have later.
He makes all things beautiful in HIS TIME, but we can mess up God’s timetable for our lives and end up hurting others.