Jesus Triumphs

Jesus passed the first test when He declared His dependency upon God the Father. He could not be lured away from the Word of God, nor could He be lured away from the will of God. The next temptation He faced was very subtle. Here is your opportunity to show everyone that God is faithful. You want God to prove Himself to the world don’t you? So let’s find a passage in the Bible that will force God’s hand (paraphrasing Matt. 4:5,6).The problem is, the wrong one is being tested, and Jesus knew that when He said, “Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test’” (vs.7). Satan tempts us to destroy our faith. God tests us to build our faith, but we are in no position to test God or manipulate Him. “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven” (Matt. 7:21).

Satan couldn’t tempt Jesus to stray from God’s word and His will, but he has one more channel to try. Satan offered Jesus all the kingdoms of this world if He would fall down and worship him. Jesus never questioned Satan’s ability to give him the kingdoms of this world. Jesus, Himself, called Satan the ruler of this world. “Then Jesus said, Be gone, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God and Him only shall you serve’” (Matt. 4:10).

You don’t have to directly worship Satan to fall spell to this temptation. All you have to do is be willing to compromise godly convictions to gain fame, fortune, recognition, acceptance, and praise from others. Do you want fame and fortune? All you have to do is be willing forfeit your soul.The “almighty” dollar has tempted many to ruin. Think of all the liberal churches that have compromised God’s word to accommodate the world. How many “Christian” institutions have lowered their standard on sexual deviancy to gain students or appease the secular media? Political correctness is our present zeitgeist. How many could say with Saul, “I have sinned, for I have transgressed the commandment of the Lord and your words, because I feared the people and obeyed their voice” (1 Sam. 15:24). Whatever it takes to stop anybody in their pursuit of God is the test of every person’s character.

Dr. Neil

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