Tuesday, April 4, 2017

The Temptation of Jesus Part 2

Submitted by Sam Nobles
“Then the Devil took Him to the holy city, had Him stand on the pinnacle of the temple, and said to Him, "If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down. For it is written: He will give His angels orders concerning you, and they will support you with their hands so that you will not strike your foot against a stone." Jesus told him, ‘It is also written: Do not test the Lord your God.’” (Matthew 4:5-7 HCSB)

Satan was abusing the promises of God’s Word by using them as a rationalization for violating another aspect of God’s word. Please know this: the promises of God’s protection are not a “green light” for us to be reckless with how we live. It is not right for Christian people to live their lives in an unguarded way, taking no responsibility for their protection (Luke 22:35-38).

Likewise, the promises of provision are not an excuse to be undisciplined and lazy in life. God expects you to work, save, and give in order to provide for your family. Remember corn in Canaan is better than manna in the desert (Joshua 5:12). A financial harvest is better than a miracle provision. The Bible also says that if we are not willing to work we will not eat (2 Thessalonians 3:6-10). In fact, the Biblical mandate for sharing and generosity is only found in the context of a person that is willing to “do” something for themselves.

In the same way, the promises of forgiveness are not a license to sin. To presumptuously sin against the grace of God is one of the most heinous things the Bible speaks about. To pervert the grace of God is to profane and trample underfoot the blood of the Son of God (Hebrews 10:26-31). It is a spit in the face of God.

So, back to the point of this devotional – how is jumping from pinnacle of the temple a temptation to Christ? There’s a reason that Satan took Jesus to the temple in Jerusalem. It would be proof to everyone in that crowded temple area that Jesus really is the Son of God.

Jesus was very careful to not let signs, wonders, and miracles not be the proving point of why people believe on Him as Savior (Luke 4:33-35; John 6:14-15). Many times in His ministry Jesus had a chance to perform on command a sign to the religious elite so they would believe and validate is Messiah-ship, but He refused them even on the Cross itself (Matthew 27:39-44).

The promises of God are not for you to prove that God will do something in your life, but that God has already done the entirety of what He needed to do by dying on the Cross.

Scripture to Claim:

“Jesus said, ‘Because you have seen Me, you have believed. Those who believe without seeing are blessed.’” (John 20:29 HCSB)

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