The Temptation of Jesus

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Read Matthew 4:1-11
Matthew 4:1–11 NASB95
1 Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2 And after He had fasted forty days and forty nights, He then became hungry. 3 And the tempter came and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.” 4 But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.’ ” 5 Then the devil took Him into the holy city and had Him stand on the pinnacle of the temple, 6 and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down; for it is written, He will command His angels concerning You’; and On their hands they will bear You up, So that You will not strike Your foot against a stone.’ ” 7 Jesus said to him, “On the other hand, it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’ ” 8 Again, the devil took Him to a very high mountain and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory; 9 and he said to Him, “All these things I will give You, if You fall down and worship me.” 10 Then Jesus said to him, “Go, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and serve Him only.’ ” 11 Then the devil left Him; and behold, angels came and began to minister to Him.

“And So It Begins...”

When you are about to begin something new watch for temptation to distract and deter you.

A. Jesus was equipped with three things.

1. Holy Spirit (Empowered to resist)

Galatians 5:16 NASB95
16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.

2. The Word (Refuted lies with truth)

Psalm 119:11 NASB95
11 Your word I have treasured in my heart, That I may not sin against You.

3. Weakness (40 days of Fasting)

2 Corinthians 12:10 NASB95
10 Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.

B. Jesus was Tempted in Three areas.

1. Wilderness / “Son of Man” / Weakness- (v. 3)

The Devil meets Jesus in the Wilderness after he has been fasting for 40 days. Jesus is hungry. The Devil calls Jesus, “Son of Man”, and tells him to turn rocks into bread. Jesus refuses. Jesus is able to live by the Spirit and not make provisions for the flesh. Demonstrating that in his weakness he is still strong and can overcome temptation.
Can you keep your flesh in check?
1 Corinthians 9:27 NASB95
27 but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.

2. Pinnacle of the Temple / “Son of God” / Will (v. 5-6)

The Devil take Jesus to the Holy City to the Pinnacle of the Temple and calls him the “Son of God” and to throw himself down off it. The Devil challenges Jesus’ authority and will. Jesus’ life matters. What he does with his life matters. He has be purpose, a ministry, a plan. To engage in such a flippant act would go off course from where he is heading. Jesus will go on to say that he is the temple and if it is destroyed it will raise in 3 days. Jesus would not be deterred from the will of the Father but the little games that the Devil wants to play. We should not live our lives for God in such a flippant way either.
Are you ready to follow the will of God even if its the harder way?
Luke 22:42 NASB95
42 saying, “Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Yours be done.”

3. High Mountain / “Satan” / Worship (v. 8-9)

The Devil takes Jesus up to a High Mountain shows him the world. The Devil tells Jesus (Not giving him a title this time) that if he worships him that he would give Jesus the whole world. Jesus tells “Satan” (Jesus gives the titles this time) to go and that only God is to be worshipped. The Devil is the prince of this world at the moment and is running a cartel of evil and sin through its political and social structures. Jesus will ransom the world from Satan but through a different way.
Do you worship God or the world? What you give yourself to determines what you worship.
Joshua 24:23–24 NASB95
23 “Now therefore, put away the foreign gods which are in your midst, and incline your hearts to the Lord, the God of Israel.” 24 The people said to Joshua, “We will serve the Lord our God and we will obey His voice.”

“Resist and it will end.”

James 4:7 NASB95
7 Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
1 Corinthians 10:13 NASB95
13 No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.
What do you have in your arsenal to battle temptation? Take Inventory.
Where are your weakness? How can you make them your strengths?
What assurances do we have when we are faced with temptation?
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