Sunday, February 11, 2018

Matthew - The Lust of the Flesh

In today's study from Matthew 4:3-4, we take a closer look at the first temptation of Christ to discover that we are all tempted in the same way and need to look to Christ's example to overcome. Jesus was tempted to turn stones into bread to prove that he was the Son of God. The devil questioned Jesus’ deity.

The First Temptation
Notice that the Devil said, “If thou be the Son of God…" He was questioning Christ’s deity. The Pharisees did the same thing in Matthew 27:40.

Of course, many still question His deity today. Yet, John said in John 1:1-2 “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God.” Our Lord himself claimed to be God throughout Scripture. He said of himself in Revelation 1:8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End…”

Lust of the Flesh
Notice that this first temptation appealed to the lust of the flesh.  After all, the Lord was hungry. Yet, the Bible says that we are all tempted in this way in 1 John 2:15-16 when we are encouraged to love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. Eve was tempted in the same why in Genesis three six when she saw that the tree was good for food.

The Devil Knew that He Could Have
The Devil knew that Jesus was capable of turning the stone to bread because he had already said in Matthew 3:9 And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.

Quoting Scripture
But Jesus didn’t fall for the deception, instead, he quoted scripture (in context) to the Devil. He actually quoted from Deut. 8:3 which says, “And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live.”

The Word of God
That is how we are able to resist the temptations of the Devil today as well, by the Word of God (Ephesians 6:10-17). 

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