The warrior spirit of Jesus of Nazareth comes through forcefully in this passage. I hope it motivates you as Christian Warriors.
We now come to the final temptation of Jesus in wilderness. There was a total of three recorded in Matthew and the first two were unsuccessful for the deceiver. Satan’s tactic has been to use truth that is twisted into non-truth. The first one was where Jesus was hungry and Satan sought for Jesus to satisfy His bodily desires, and the second was for Jesus to test The Father. In this last temptation we see a mixture of the two ideas combined into one.
We open the text in Matthew 4:8-9: “Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to him, ‘All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.’ ” As always we need to understand proper context so we think about who Jesus actually is. He was just baptized by John the Baptist before being led into this wilderness. When He came out of the water, the Holy Spirit descended as a dove and the Father spoke from heaven giving Him divine validation that, how shall we say, “runneth over.” Most prominent for the original readers of this passage is Daniel 7:14 speaking about the Messiah. “And to him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve him; his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom one that shall not be destroyed.” How then is this a temptation for Jesus?
It is a temptation because of Jesus’ humanity. He is aware of what He has come to do, and this is a short cut to acquiring the claim to His Kingdom. As the first temptation of bread quite possibly make His stomach rumble, this temptation brought the coming pain and suffering to the forefront of His mind. This is not simply Satan telling Jesus that he will give Him all of these kingdoms, but Satan telling Jesus that He doesn’t have to go through the pain and suffering that is on His mind. The second aspect of this temptation is a test of God. Isaiah 53:10 also speaks of the Messiah as the suffering servant. “Yet, it was the will of the LORD to crush him. . .” If Jesus tried to go around the pain that He was destined to go through the plan would not be accomplished. Salvation would not come to the world, and we would not have a “Gospel” or “Good News” to preach. There would be nothing good for sinners before a righteous God.
Satan knew this was a crushing blow against God’s plan to save you and me from our sin, and Jesus crushing this temptation by replying “Be gone, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve’ ” was, I believe, with you and me in mind.
The Gospel of Jesus Christ is seen in this final temptation. His fortitude in accomplishing the will of His Father stands out in bold, red letters. Jesus is the ultimate warrior. He fought and defeated powers that want our destruction. Let us be thankful for His strength in matters where we are powerless.
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Matthew 4:10 – “Then Jesus said to him, ‘Be gone, Satan! For it is written, You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve.’ “