😎🐫🎤 Christ’s peace and presence be with you. There was one line in last Sunday’s Gospel reading that caught my attention, like someone slapping you across the face would.
Luke 4:1-13 The Temptation of Jesus
“Filled with the Holy Spirit, Jesus returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the desert for forty days, to be tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and when they were over he was hungry. The devil said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread.” Jesus answered him, “It is written, ‘One does not live by bread alone.’” Then he took Him up and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world in a single instant. The devil said to Him, “I shall give to You all this power and their glory; for it has been handed over to me, and I may give it to whomever I wish. All this will be Yours, if You worship me.” Jesus said to him in reply, “It is written:
‘You shall worship the Lord, your God, and Him alone shall you serve.’”
Then he led Him to Jerusalem, made Him stand on the parapet of the temple, and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down from here, for it is written:
‘He will command His angels concerning You, to guard You,’
‘With their hands they will support You, lest You dash Your foot against a stone.’”
Jesus said to him in reply, “It also says, ‘You shall not put the Lord, your God, to the test.’”
When the devil had finished every temptation, he departed from Him for a time.”
There is so much going on in this passage, but the face slap for me is that last line, “When the devil had finished every temptation, he departed from Him for a time.” That is a sentence we could easily slide past, but what it’s telling us is that the devil is guaranteed to come back to tempt and mess with Christ some more. And if the devil is bold enough to keep coming back time and again to Christ, you can bet you and I are next. Until the moment we die, Satan is guaranteed to tempt and mess with us every moment he can.
Unlike Christ, I, not always, but often fail when the devil tempts me. Just one example from last week was when a couple ladies from my GAL group came to my house Thursday evening. As Michelle was getting out of her car, a man walking by asked her for some money. She was kind enough to offer him what change she had, but she didn’t stop there. She offered him some food, a drink, and a jacket. I stood at the door thinking, “I wouldn’t do that. He’s probably just trying to get some money for drugs.” Michelle was so willing to give what she had. You may be thinking…What does this have to do with being tempted by the devil? In moments like that, he tempts me away from unconditionally helping others. I think…”I show up every day and work hard to make an income. Why should I waste it on someone that won’t appreciate it and aren’t willing to work to take care of themselves?” Yes, there is some pride going on there also, so I’ve got multiple layers of sin at work here. As I’ve replayed this event in my mind, God has shown me times in which He has unconditionally given me gifts that I didn’t deserve, or work for, or truly appreciate the value. I saw that at times, I was no different than the image I projected upon that guy walking down the street. And just like me, that man is a child of God.
As we journey though Lent, our church offered us what they call the Little Black Book. On Monday, March 7th, the reading addressed how we should approach prayer in our lives. Again, it was the last line that hit me. “Pray always…It’s not a burden. It’s a luxury.” Prayer is a luxury.
Bless others and be blessed.
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#ColtonDixon – Devil is a Liar