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Trial or Temptation

January 16, 2022   /   Forest Park Church

To live in this world means that you will encounter temptation.

But if we want to be godly people, we must learn to resist the temptations that come at us from the world, the flesh, and the devil.

Jesus Christ is our example and teacher when it comes to resisting temptation.

Heb. 4:15

He was “tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin” .

If we want to be like Jesus, we will be eager to learn from Him how He resisted the devil.

This account of Jesus’ temptation must have come down to the disciples and to us from Jesus Himself, since it was a private encounter.

I. Trial or ?

Luke 4:1-13

And Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness 2 for forty days, being tempted by the devil. And he ate nothing during those days. And when they were ended, he was hungry.

A: of the Human Experience

1 Corinthians 10:13

No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

B. Temptation.

James 1:14. But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. 15 Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.

C. Test or Temptation?

A:

B:

C:

Not only during these 40 days, but also at other times, Jesus would get away from the crowds and even from the disciples to spend time alone with the Father (5:16). If Jesus needed such times, how much more do we.

Jesus was tempted immediately following His baptism, when the Father affirmed Him from heaven and the Holy Spirit descended on Him as a dove.

II. Three areas of

Each time Satan attacked, Jesus answered with Scripture, specifically with quotations from Deuteronomy.

To use Scripture as Jesus did, we must commit it to memory. We will not always have a Bible and concordance with us when we are tempted. But God will bring to our mind appropriate Scripture to ward off the enemy’s attacks.

A: (I want it so I’ll get it)

Luke 4:2-4

And he ate nothing during those days. And when they were ended, he was hungry. 3 The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread.” 4 And Jesus answered him, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone.’”

The devil slyly begins, “If you are the Son of God….” He’s basically saying to Jesus, “You may not be the Son of God at all. Prove it to me by doing this minor miracle.”

When we’re new at any role — not to mention Messiahship — we feel insecure.

  • And when someone taunts us and doubts our role, we’re very tempted to show them, to prove it.

  • This is the temptation to pride, to prove ourselves to others — and, in our insecurity, to ourselves as well.

It was precisely when Jesus was hungry that the devil appeared with his temptation to turn the stone to bread.

There’s nothing wrong with meeting physical needs — food, shelter, love, companionship, sex — by legitimate means. But there is a higher law than our physical desires, and that is God’s Word. The essence of Jesus’ reply is a quotation of:

Deuteronomy 8:3

“He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your fathers had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord.”

The point is, Satan hit Jesus with this temptation at the precise moment that Jesus was hungry. He always works like that—he hits you when you’re down. He bides his time until you are vulnerable, and then he moves in with his subtle suggestion of evil.

B:

Satan’s offer, like all his offers, was a mixed bag of truth and error.

Luke 4:6-8

And the devil took him up and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time, 6 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. 7 If you, then, will worship me, it will all be yours.” 8 And Jesus answered him, “It is written,

“‘You shall worship the Lord your God,

and him only shall you serve.’”

We understand the temptation. We live in the present, we want instant gratification.

  • We would rather get our rewards now and worry later about the future.

  • Does this describe us? What is the balance on your credit cards?

Jesus answers with Scripture he had doubtless learned as a boy:

Deuteronomy 6:13

“It is written, ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve him only'” (4:8;).

Our God is a jealous God. We are not free agents in the world, picking or choosing between world powers to align our tiny selves with. We must choose the Lord our God, or be sucked irresistibly into the orbit of the devil’s minions. If we don’t worship the Lord, we are lost.

C:

Be careful! Satan can also quote the Bible for his own purposes!

  • The main rule of biblical interpretation is to compare Scripture with Scripture, letting the Bible interpret itself.

  • Be careful to interpret a verse in its context, rather than just subjectively grabbing a verse and saying that it means whatever you feel it means.

  • You cannot properly apply Scripture until you properly interpret it.

  • This is one good reason to read the whole Bible over and over.

  • It gives you balance, so that you don’t get carried along with every wind of doctrine that blows.

Have you ever had dreams of fame? Of being a movie star or sports hero? Who hasn’t? But the desire to be respected in your profession or popular in your school are the more common ways we deal with this desire. I think that Jesus’ third temptation is for popularity.

Luke 4:9-12

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, 10 for it is written,

“‘He will command his angels concerning you, to guard you,’ 11 and“‘On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.’”12 And Jesus answered him, “It is said, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’”

Conclusion:

Luke 4:13   And when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from him

BE READY FOR FURTHER ATTACKS.

Note verse 13: Jesus’ victory over Satan was not final, and neither is ours. You can win a victory today, but the enemy will bide his time and return another day, especially when you’re most vulnerable.

  • As long as we are in this body, we cannot claim complete and final victory over the world, the flesh, or the devil.

  • Someone has said, “Temptations, unlike opportunities, will always give you many second chances.”

Constant vigilance is required. The Bible commands us to flee certain sins, but to resist the devil.

  • If we put on the full armor of God, we can stand firm in the evil day.

  • But we can’t relax our guard until we are face to face with our Lord Jesus. He has overcome the enemy, and if we depend on Him, we can resist temptation.

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