SOAP Devotional 2014-09-11
Scripture – Observation – Application – Prayer
Part five of five with this text…
Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted there by the devil. For forty days and forty nights he fasted and became very hungry. During that time the devil came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become loaves of bread.” But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say, ‘People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ ” Then the devil took him to the holy city, Jerusalem, to the highest point of the Temple, and said, “If you are the Son of God, jump off! For the Scriptures say, ‘He will order his angels to protect you. And they will hold you up with their hands so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.’ ” Jesus responded, “The Scriptures also say, ‘You must not test the LORD your God.’ ” Next the devil took him to the peak of a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. “I will give it all to you,” he said, “if you will kneel down and worship me.” “Get out of here, Satan,” Jesus told him. “For the Scriptures say, ‘You must worship the LORD your God and serve only him.’ ” Then the devil went away, and angels came and took care of Jesus. (Matthew 4:1-11 NLT)
When the season of temptation passed: “Then the devil went away, and angels came and took care of Jesus.” Let it be said first that even though the temptation was here for a season, Jesus did not sin. He not only proved himself as the perfect sacrifice, but he showed us how to resist sin by remembering what the scriptures said. It wasn’t the only time he was tempted, but we do not know how each temptation came.this same account in Luke ends with, “When the devil had finished tempting Jesus, he left him until the next opportunity came.” (Luke 4:13 NLT) Scriptures also tell us, “This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same testings we do, yet he did not sin.” (Hebrews 4:15 NLT) So we know that Jesus was tempted in every way like we are, but he did not sin.
I cannot say that I have never sinned, nor can I say that I never will again. All of us have sinned. That is why we needed a savior. But, Jesus showed us how to overcome sin. Twice in scripture, Jesus told people to “sin no more”. Once to the invalid at the Pool of Bethesda and also to the adulteress that he saved from being stoned to death. Both of them needed to make lifestyle choices and leave their sinful ways. When we become Christians, Jesus wants us to do the same. Will we live in sinless perfection? I do not know anyone who has, but we should have a change of mind that looks at our new life with the potential within this new birth to “go and sin no more.” As you mature in Christ, you should become better at resisting sin. Remember, to be tempted is not a sin. It is when we give into sin, that we fail in following the example of our Christ.
Father, I do ask your forgiveness for the ways that I fail you, but I am so thankful that it is so much less than it used to be. Help me to remember your word when I need to resist the enemy of my soul. “I have hidden your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.” (Psalms 119:11 NLT