It is Written

I'm amazed at the life of Jesus. What amazes me is that He was what I was designed to be, and died to restore me to what I should be. It's why Paul calls Him the Second Adam. He, the designer and author, lived and died to restore us to what He created us to be. He didn't have to! Many of us would have scrapped this project and started over (if at all). Yet He didn't. This morning, as I was in my personal study, I came across Jesus' temptation in the book of Luke and made a few observations: "And Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness for forty days, being tempted by the devil. And he ate nothing during those days. And when they were ended, he was hungry." -Luke 4:1-2 Jesus was led by the Spirit; shouldn't this be what we desire to do? Every aspect of our lives should be led by the Spirit, but how often do we say "I have this, I don't need you for this." I think, though, because sometimes (maybe even most times), the Spirit leads us to uncharted and/or scary territory. In this case, the Spirit led Jesus to be tested in the wilderness for 40 days without food. During this time, while He was physically weak, He was tested Spiritually. What is more, in His humanity, the hunger got to Him! This shows Jesus' humanity, yet it also shows His devotion to being led through the Spirit.


"The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread.” And Jesus answered him, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone.’” -Luke 4:3-4


How did Satan begin His attack? By trying to reach Jesus at His necessity. The body can only go so long without food. Satan knew this, and was attacking Jesus at what He needed, but also where He was most vulnerable. In His weakness, however, Jesus went to the Word of God. He declared "It is written." He stood upon the Word of God, even in His weakness! This is why it is so important to not merely have knowledge of the Word of God, but to have intimacy with it as well. Jesus knew that, no matter what happened, God would provide, because God's word promised it! If He took what God would provide by force (in this case, force of Will), as Adam and Eve did, then He would be in disobedience to the Spirit that led Him in to the Wilderness. "And the devil took him up and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time, and said to him, “To you I will give all this authority and their glory, for it has been delivered to me, and I give it to whom I will. If you, then, will worship me, it will all be yours.” And Jesus answered him, “It is written,

“‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and him only shall you serve.’” Luke 4:5-8 Unable to bend Jesus' from His current need, He went and attacked Jesus through His Mission. Satan knew Jesus came to deliver the world. He knew that he had authority over the world, and so, He tried to show Jesus something (he thought) to His advantage. Satan tested Jesus with the very thing Jesus came to save. If He would but take this short cut, admit Satan's way superior (worship him), His mission would be complete in an instant. Jesus need not go through any hardship to redeem creation, if only Jesus would worship him. Yet, again, Jesus knew that this was a short cut leading to more heartache (as the first Adam discovered in his sin). Again, Jesus responded with "It is written." Jesus knew that His road was one of sorrow (the Prophets spoke of it!), but to complete God's will, to redeem the Kingdoms of the earth in Spirit and Truth, God's righteousness, and His alone would have to do it. So Jesus refused to bow, and went to the Word of God to combat the temptation of short cut. "And he took him to Jerusalem and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here, for it is written,

“‘He will command his angels concerning you, to guard you,’

and

“‘On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.’” And Jesus answered him, “It is said, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’” And when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from him until an opportune time. Luke 4:9-13


And so, out of temptations to Jesus' mission, Satan lured Jesus to test God's love for His Son. "Test your Father's love, Son of God, throw yourself down," he seems to say. "After all, it is written." And Satan used the very thing Jesus used to beat back temptation: Scripture. Satan knows the word of God well, He is in rebellion against it, and has taught the children of Adam to be, so He will and does (against Jesus even) use Scripture twisted to his own means to fool us, and lead us astray. This is why it is important that believers become intimate with God's word! This is why, daily, we need to be seeking God's will through the Scriptures! Our enemy knows it, and will use it against us! Yet, Jesus, hungry (starving, I would say), maintained His loyalty to the Father, staying in the Spirit, and said once more "it is written." He used the Word in the right context to see and know what God's will is. Led by the Spirit, standing upon God's word, Jesus stood firm against Satan's snares. This is how we, too, should live. Jesus shows us the way, and through His Word and by the Holy Spirit, we, also, can combat the enemy.


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