We are continuing to look at the temptations of Jesus in Matthew chapter 4. The second temptation of Jesus has Satan trying to get Jesus to apply Scripture when it is, again, about “proving Himself” as God’s beloved Son.
I am amazed at Satan’s brilliance with Jesus. Our Lord trusted, rested, and quoted the Scriptures (God’s Word). Satan says, “Okay, if that is how You will fight, let me test You with Scripture and try to get you to apply them in regard to Your ‘self-protection plan for life.’”
In verse 5, Satan tries the “if you are” challenge again and comes back at Jesus with a quote out of the Bible. He is asking Jesus to pull off a PR stunt and get a crowd behind Him, as they watched the angels catching Him when He jumped, because Scripture has said they would.
Verse 6 of Matthew, chapter 4 says, “ . . . He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up on their hands so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.”
Satan is saying “prove it,” by seeing if God will come through for you and do what He says He will do – “send angels to catch you.” Jesus doesn’t have to prove anything by “testing His Father,” because He has the uttermost confidence that “He is the Son, and pleasing to the Father.” Why? Because the Father had told Him with the spoken word.
Jesus says, “I don’t need to test the trustworthiness of My Father’s Word – He said it, and even though I haven’t eaten for 40 days, I trust Him.”
When the Father asked Jesus to go to the cross – remember the “cup passage,” where Jesus said, “Not my will, but your will be done.” Even if the Father asked me to be rejected and killed by my people, I still will believe that I am My Father’s “Beloved Son.”
Now us – aren’t you and I called to this type of faith, also? Jesus has said that nothing will separate us from God’s love, and that no matter what happens we are “more than conquerors through Christ who loves us” (Rom. 8:36). When our world is falling apart, do we struggle with all the “why me God” or do we cling to the words of our Savior that say . . .
“I will never leave you or forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5).
“I am with you always” (Matthew 28:20).
“Nothing will ever separate you from my love for you” (Romans 8:39).
Pretty strong. Now I must decide if I tell God, “Change my circumstances and prove you love me,” or “Change my heart, that I may know You love me.” It’s okay to ask “why,” but most of the time don’t expect an answer. The Holy Spirit is always committed to lead us to the “Who” and have our heart “ravished” by the “Who of Glory,” making all the “why” we need to know just fade away.
Lesson – don’t use Scripture as a tool of proving God. Our Father has already “proved His love.”
Romans 5:8, “God proved His love for us, in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
Next time, we will see what Satan is after in all of us.