Friday, December 10, 2010

Worship the LORD your God and serve only him

Luke 4:1-13 NLT    
  1 Then Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan River. He was led by the Spirit in the wilderness, 2 where he was tempted by the devil for forty days. Jesus ate nothing all that time and became very hungry. 
   3 Then the devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become a loaf of bread.” 
   4  But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say, ‘People do not live by bread alone.’”
   5  Then the devil took him up and revealed to him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.  6 “I will give you the glory of these kingdoms and authority over them,” the devil said, “because they are mine to give to anyone I please. 7 I will give it all to you if you will worship me.” 
   8 Jesus replied, “The Scriptures say,  ‘You must worship the LORD your God and serve only him.’”
   9  Then the devil took him to Jerusalem, to the highest point of the Temple, and said, “If you are the Son of God, jump off! 10 For the Scriptures say, ‘He will order his angels to protect and guard you. 11 And they will hold you up with their hands  so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.’” 
   12 Jesus responded, “The Scriptures also say, ‘You must not test the LORD your God.’”
   13 When the devil had finished tempting Jesus, he left him until the next opportunity came.

You and I might think that Satan and his forces give us hard temptations but this was horrendous. First, Jesus willingly does not eat for a month and a half. Remember that the next time you have to miss a lunch or a dinner! That long without food and water can make one lose cognitive function and ability to exert will over decisions. Yet Jesus was clear-headed in his battle.  From this I can take comfort that Jesus will keep me clear headed as well when I must endure such battles with God's enemy, just as God kept Jesus clear headed. The battle belongs to The Lord and He is the one who will provide us the resources we need to engage within it.

Jesus was God, was in the beginning with God according to John 1. Jesus created all that God willed to have created, so Jesus was Satan's creator. Yet here that creation has the arrogance to try to mislead its creator. He threw his wildest misleads to Jesus but none worked. Make rocks into bread? No need. God will provide what His servants need, and they need His presence more than mere bread or food.

Satan will give to Jesus all the people of the earth if Jesus would only worship him who is God's enemy? A lie for Satan does not have those people to give-- they are free agents and can choose God. If they do not, they, with Satan will be tormented eternally. Worship is reserved for God alone. Only Christ had the means to turn people from Satan's ways and that was why He came.

Jump off the tallest building to prove he was supernatural? A fools task because even that would not change people's minds. Their redemption had to be paid regardless and His primary purpose was just to do that.

Satan left, and will leave us, too, when we resist him with the power of God's Holy Spirit present within us. You can count on that today!
Your servant in Christ's love

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