Jesus, Our Hero

Jesus, Our Hero

Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil. After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.” Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written: ‘He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’” Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’” Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.” Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’” Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him. (Matthew 4:1-11)

Moses, the leader, was consumed with rage. David, the king, saw a beautiful woman and seduced her. Elijah, God’s prophet, began to despair. In those moments they didn’t seem to act like who they were. But that’s the point of temptation. Satan wants to attack our identity. He doesn’t want us to act like who we are—children of God! Even knowing this, we are faced with temptation and, yeah, we fall to it.

Even Jesus was no stranger to temptation. Sure, he was the Son of God, but even Jesus was led out into the desert to be tempted just like we are; to be lied to by Satan just like we are. That was Satan’s big trick. He was going to attack who Jesus was through his lies.

Satan knew Jesus was tired and hungry, so he said, “Prove to me that you are the Son of God and make some bread for yourself.” He was trying to get the Son of God to use his almighty power selfishly. But Jesus wouldn’t. He came to be our Savior; not to be served or to serve himself.

Then Jesus stood on the edge of the temple and Satan said, “Prove you are the Son of God by throwing yourself down. If you are that important, God will save you.” But instead Jesus trusted perfectly. Jesus didn’t need proof of God’s promise. Instead, he wanted to be the fulfillment of God’s promise of salvation to us.

Finally, Jesus stood before all the splendor of the kingdoms of the world and Satan said, “This can be yours if you just worship…ME.” Maybe this was quite tempting after being in a desert with little to nothing to call his own, but Jesus refused because his entire life would be a perfect act of worship to God.

Jesus didn’t fall for Satan’s lies. He wasn’t defeated by temptation. He didn’t falter as we do, instead he was everything we are not. He is our Savior who has made us who we are—blood bought children of God. When Satan lies to us and attacks who we are, we know that Jesus defeated Satan and has made us his own.
Prayer: Dear Jesus, thank you for defeating Satan and his power. Give me the strength to flee temptation and stand firm in what you have made me to be. Amen.