February 21 2021
The Temptation of Jesus
The whole account of Jesus’ temptation is given in two short verses. They tell us the basics about temptation. These few verses explain what you should know concerning temptation–
It is God allowed - “The Spirit immediately drove Him”
The Spirit in a sense of urgency – “immediately drove” – takes Jesus into a wilderness where He will have solitude to think through the method He will use to accomplish the task. He is tempted to take the devil’s way.
The Father allows temptation to come. But always with limits. Jesus was tempted for 40 days. Job was tested. But with limits. Job lost his children, his wealth, his property but not his health. He kept his wife. And when he was then afflicted with sickness God spared his life.
Jesus reminds Peter, “Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift each of you like wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon that your faith will not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” Luke 22:31-32 Sometimes we endure temptation so in the future we may help others when they face temptation.
It is Satan conducted – “Tempted by Satan”
Mark would remind us that Jesus is tested πειραζόμενος. For forty days Jesus was tested by Satan before He began His ministry. When we are tempted our faith is tested. Mark explains that Jesus was “tempted by Satan.”
Many hold the opinion that the better Christian you are the less temptation you have. The opposite is the case: The better you are, the more you are tempted. Temptation is a trying time. Requiring a spiritual struggle. It is a wilderness experience. In which one fights with wild beasts.
They are called beasts for a reason. They are fierce monsters. With which you must contend. Satan wants to destroy you. But the victory is yours in Christ Jesus.
It is angel ministering – “Angels ministered to Him”
They are with Jesus throughout His tempting. Mark uses the word “ministered.” (And for those of you who are grammar geeks, Mark writs in the imperfect tense to remind us that a prolonged or continued action took place.)
Although the Spirit drives us to a place of testing. And although God does not tempt us. God does not leave us alone. To resist the devil by ourselves! His angels, His messengers, continually support and comfort us in our trials. “Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation?” – (Hebrews 1:14)
Passive Sentences – 9%
Reading Level – 5.3
Images for The Temptation of Christ - Copyright © Ed Riojas, Higher Things; Ary Scheffer circa 1854; Google Images copyright ©; Schnorr Von Carolsfeld woodcuts © WELS