Christ Jesus Defeats Our Temptation
and Saves Us by His Faithfulness
In faith and the fear of God Abraham prepared to sacrifice his beloved son, Isaac. At the Word of the Lord, he “took the wood of the burnt offering and laid it on Isaac his son” and “when they came to the place of whih God had told him, ‘ Abraham bound Isaac “and laid him on the altar” (Genesis 22:6,9) Then God stayed Abraham’s hand and provided “for Himself the Lamb for a burn offering” (Genesis 22:8). That Lamb is God’s own beloved Son, Jesus, in whom “all the nations of the earth” are blessed (Genesis 22:18) As the Substitute for all the sins of men, Jesus is driven by the Spirit “into the wilderness” to be “tempted by Satan” (Mark 1:12-13) in order to endure and defeat all temptation. We are tempted by our own desire, “which conceives and gives birth to sin” (James 1:14-154) But this blessed man, Christ Jesus, remained “steadfast under trial” and He has received “the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love Him” (James 1:12) His faithfulness, His victory, and His life are now given to us by His grace in the Gospel.
Collect for the First Sunday in Lent; O Lord God, You led Your ancient people throuth th ewilderness and brought them to the prpmised land. Guide the people of Your Church that following our Savior we may walk through the wilderness of this world toward the glory of the world to come; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen
Collect for Ash Wednesday: Almighty God, You despise nothing You have made ansd forgive the sins of all who are penitent. Create inn us new and contrite hearts that lamenting oru sins and acknowledging our wrethcnednesss we may receive from You full pardon and forviceness; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
2015 Wednesday Evening Lenten themes: The Attitudes of Lent
Ash Wednesday – The Attitude of Testing Genesis 22:1-18
Mid-week #2 – The Attitude of Suffering – Genesis 28:10-17
Mid-week #3 – The Attitude of Cleansing – Exoduss 20:1-17
Mid-week #4 – The Attitude of Believing – Numbers 21:4-9
Mid-week #5 – The Attitude of Sacrifice – Jeremiah 31:31-34
Mid-week #6 – The Attitude of Opportunity – Zschariah 9:9-10
Prayer in times of temptation: Almighty and everlasting God, through Your Son You have promised us forgiveness of sins and everlasting life. Govern our hearts by Your Holy Spirit that in our daily need, and especially in all time of temptation, we may seek Your help and, by a true and lively faith in Your Word, obtain all that You have promised; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Prayer for aid against temotation: O God, You justify thre ungodly asnd desire not the death of a sinner. Graciously assist us by Your heavenly aid and evermore shield us with Your protection that no temptation may separate us from Your love in Christ Jesus, Your Son, our Lord.
Monday 16 February 2015 – Psalm 91:9-13; antiphon, Psalm 91:15-16 – The Introit sets the theme for the day: that, in times of trouble, the Lord is our only sure dwelling place and refuge. The Lords loves everyone who puts his trust in Him, and so He promises, “When he calls to me, I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble.. I will rescue him and honor him,’
Tuesday 17 February 2015 – Psalm 25:1-10 – In this psalm, David prays for God’s mercy when he is under attack by his enemies. He asks the Lord to remember His mercy and steadfast love, and not to look upon David’s sins. We do the same thing when we pray the Lord’s prayer. We ask God to deliver us from evil, and in praying ‘Forgive us our trespasses,’ we pray that ‘our Father in heaven would not look upon our sins, nor on their account deny our prayer.’ (Small Catechism)
Wednesday 18 February 2015 –Genesis 22:1-18 – Our Old Testament reading - and the text for Ash Wednesday - is a familiar one; the testing of Abraham. When we New Testament believers hear this account, it reminds us of our Savior Jesus. Jehovahjirech – The Lord Will Provide – supplies a substitute for Isaac. The ram is caught by its horns, and thus remains unblemished, the perfect sacrifice. Likewise, the Lord offered up His Son Jesus on the cross to be our substitute. He was the perfect sacrifice, unblemished by the taint of sins.
Thursday 19 February 2015 – James 1:12-18 – When we are baptized, it is as if a bull’s –eye is painted on us. The devil will attack us, for he knows that, in Baptism, we are washed clean of our sins, and are made the children of God. When temptation comes, therefore, as it surely will, we must remain steadfast in the faith we received at Baptism.
We do this by reading and hearing god’s Word, by daily remembering our Baptism, and by being regular in our church attendance, where we confess our sins and receive absolution and where we receive the Lord’s Supper for the forgiveness of sins and the strengthening and nurturing of our faith.
Friday 20 February 2015 – Mark 1:9-15 – After our Lord’s Baptism the Spirit led Him into the desert to suffer temptation at the hands of the devil He endured the same temptations as were presented to Adam and Eve in the Garden – the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, as the holy Evangelist John names them (1 John 2:16) Unlike our first parents (and us), however, He does not give into temptation, but resists the devil with the words of Holy Scripture.
Temptation is a testing of faith. Traditionally, the first Sunday in Lent deals with Jesus’ temptations in the wilderness. The beginning of Jesus’ ministry is an integral part of the baptism and temptation, for it naturally follows both. In his baptism, Jesus was called to his Messiahship. In the temptation he decided how to carry out his mission. The death of John the Baptist gives the immediate occasion for the beginning of his ministry. Mark does not tell us what the temptations were. They are symbolized by the “wild beasts” and the “wilderness.” Though Mark does not say Jesus was victorious, it can be assumed that he was because the angels continually ministered to him throughout the forty-day period.
Saturday 21 February 2015 – The great hymn of the Reformation, A Mighty Fortress Is Our God (LSB #656), is our hymn of the day. It reminds us that, though the devil is a formidable foe, one whom we are unable to overcome on our own, he has been defeated by the Word made flesh, our Savior Jesus. ‘Our victory has been won; The Kingdom ours remaineth.’
Lectionary summary from the LCMS Commission on Worship
Artwork by Julius Schnoor von Carslsfeld, © WELS
Prayers from Lutheran Service Book © 2006 Concordia Publishing House