Saturday, March 8, 2014

Lent 1

9 March 2014
Lent 1
Matthew 4:1-11
“Who’s Word, Which Voice?”

God’s Word creates and sustains our new life in Jesus Christ. But God’s Word is not the only word around. There is the word of a fallen and sinful world. Its chief spokesman is Satan. And the World’s word tries to snuff out the new life affected in us by God’s Word. The question our Gospel lesson asks of us is this, “whose word, which voice are you willing to take?”

  1. The first word that man hears concerns how he receives God’s Word.
A.        Through Satan the world says, “doubt it!” (v.3) The tempter came to him and said, "If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread"
1.       Without any doubt Jesus is the Son of God. There should be no doubt.
2.        Satan plants the seeds of doubt for when and if they come to fruition he will use them along with fear to drive us away from the safety and comfort, which we have in Christ.
B.        But God says, “trust Me!” (v.4) Jesus answered, "It is written: 'Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.”
1.       Jesus quotes Scripture (Deut. 8:3) Scripture – God’s direct Word is Jesus’ only tool. What other tool do you have at your disposal? You can’t by your own reason or strength come to Him. All you have in warding off Satan’s arrows is the truths, which come from the Father’s inspired Word.
2.       You cannot live on anything except God’s final Word. Anything else will come up short and will not satisfy. You do not live on the mere “bread” of this world – but on the Father’s promises.

Transition:  There is the issue of receiving God’s Word. There is also the issue concerning how we apply it to our lives.
   The second word that man hears concerns how he uses God’s Word.
A.        Through Satan the world says, “Misuse it” (Vv. 5-6) “Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. ”If you are the Son of God," he said, "throw yourself down. For it is written:" 'He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.”
1.       The Devil uses Scripture also. Psalm 91:11, 12 He’s good a quoting it. And he uses it to his advantage every time he can.
2.       Yet he will put a little truth in every lie and a little lie in every truth to deceive us in to false belief, despair and other great shames and vice.
B.        But God says, “Use it properly” (v. 7) “Jesus answered him, "It is also written: 'Do not put the Lord your God to the test
1.       Jesus responds again using God’s Holy Word Deut. 6:16
2.       You must have a proper understanding of God’s Law and Gospel and use it correctly.

Transition: Use and application of God’s Word is necessary. The proof is how God’s Word is carried out in our day- to- day living.

      3.      The third word that man hears concerns how he is to live out God’s Word. Through Satan the world says, “Disobey it” (Vv.8-9) “Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. ”All this I will give you," he said, "if you will bow down and worship me.”
A.      This was the temptation to surrender all to the Devil.
B.      This is his temptation on us to this very hour. Take the credit, go for the gusto, after all you deserve it!
C.      But God says, “Submit to it” (v.10)”Jesus said to him, "Away from me, Satan! For it is written: 'Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.”
1. Jesus’ final Word to Satan is with the Word alone! He quotes Deut. 6:13
2. Can you do any better? May you have proficiency and a proper use and understanding of God’s Holy Word.

Whose word are you going to take?  Which voice will you listen? God’s or the world’s? May you always look to Jesus for our example and for our strength. In life and death He took God’s Word and followed it. In this way He brought you grace to do the same.
Words – 1,082
Flesch Reading Ease – 85%

Flesch – Kincaid Grade Level – 3.8

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