Reading: Matthew 4
“If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.” – Matthew 4:3
I am sure Satan knew who Jesus was. Right from the beginning he wanted the Christ child to be killed. But, tempter as he was (and is), he just really wanted to know how far he could go, and how far before Jesus, if at all, would give in. But Jesus was victorious (how can He not be?).
I realise it’s the same tactic the enemy uses on us. Just as he questioned Jesus’ identity—so does he on us at times– making us doubt our salvation, our identity in Christ, our adoption into the family of God. But Jesus was unmoved, able to strongly establish who He was—“… Do not put the Lord your God to the test”, “Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only”. And just as Jesus was able to quickly quote passages from the Scriptures—then I should also be!
“Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” – Ephesians 6:17
“So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptised into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” – Galatians 3:26-28 (NIV)
Satan was continuing in his pride and rebellion that caused his downfall by tempting Jesus with the “kingdoms of the world and their splendour” in exchange for worshipping the devil. But Jesus was about to establish a different kingdom—a kingdom within us. He would not be distracted. And as for the treasures of this world—why would Jesus be tempted? He made them all.
The enemy also knows the weaknesses of our flesh and our appetite for materials things. But the Lord sustains us today—with his word, his promises and his practical provisions (and even more than that!). And our hope is that one day our bodies will be glorified—perfectly healthy, never wanting! And the earth restored for those of us He has redeemed.