Matthew 4:1-11 Jesus Tempted

Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted[a] by the devil. After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”

Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’[b]

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.’[c]

Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’[d]

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.”

10 Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’[e]

11 Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.

Jesus Tempted

Jesus, you were tempted in more ways than I was.  Your understanding of yourself was developing and you had realised that you were God’s Son.  The Spirit takes you out into the desert to have Satan tempt you.  Then your whole calling is questioned.  When you were physically exhausted and pushed beyond what many of us can bear, you stood the test.

However, I am perplexed.  Why would the Spirit lead you to such a place of trial?  If we love someone why do we hand them over to Satan?  I remember Paul says something similar about someone in Corinth intent on sinning.  Do we let them see where their faith really is?  What is gained through such tests?  If I am honest, I have felt tested by life’s circumstances for a while now.  I feel the daily pain rising in my back and the congestion in my head and I wish it would just go away.  Seeing how you endured hardship and temptation for a purpose gives me courage to endure – to persevere.

Questions

  1. Why does Jesus go into the wilderness?
  2. Why was Satan’s temptation so poignant?
  3. Why didn’t Jesus eat?
  4. How does Jesus’ temptation help us to relate to him?
  5. In what ways are you tested?  In what ways are you challenged to drop God’s calling on your life?
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About Plymothian

I teach at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. My interests include education, biblical studies, and spiritual formation. I have been married to Kelli since 1998 and we have two children, Daryl and Amelia. For recreation I like to run, play soccer, play board games, read and travel.
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