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...(Luke 4:1-2a)
Read Luke 4:1-13
When Satan first squared off against humanity he tripped
up our parents in the Garden of Eden, with his cunningly
twisted words. They disobeyed God's Word, ate the
forbidden fruit, and plunged our world into death and
destruction. Now Satan squares off against our Savior.
For 40 days Jesus ate no food as our enemy unleashed
a devastating torrent of deceitful temptations. Luke records
three final devious traps Satan set for Jesus.
First, he appeals to Jesus' great hunger: "If You are the
Son of God, command this stone to become bread." It
sounds innocent enough, but Jesus sees the trap.
Following Satan's advice will show He doesn't trust God
to provide for His needs. Jesus answers, "It is written,
'Man shall not live by bread alone.'"
The tempter next offers to give Jesus all the kingdoms of
the world if He will worship him. Jesus answers, "It is
written, 'You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him
only shall you serve.'" He came to walk His Father's
difficult saving path-not Satan's shortcut.
In one final temptation Jesus is placed on the pinnacle of
the temple. Satan challenges Him to jump, appealing to
God's promise in the Psalm, "He will command His
angels to guard you ... lest you strike your foot against a
stone" (Psalm 91:11a, 12b).
If Jesus won't jump, it looks like He doesn't trust God's
promise. But Jesus sees through it. He doesn't have to
prove His faith to Satan. He replies, "It is written, 'You shall
not put the Lord your God to the test.'"
Having no success in his temptations, Satan departs from
Jesus, waiting a more opportune time.
Almighty God, where Adam and Eve fell to Satan's lies, Your
Son stood firm. Thank You for His salvation. Help me trust
You as He did and cling to Your Word alone. I pray in Jesus'
Lenten Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries