And when the devil had finished every temptation, he departed from Him until an opportune time. Luke 4:13
I find that temptation rarely comes on a good day. I would have more resources to resist. Temptation comes when I’m worn down, when I’ve lost a night’s sleep, when I’m grieving something, or when I’m stressed by life. That’s when the enemy pours it on. Is there a scripture to support that? Actually, yes. Jesus went from his own beautiful baptism by John the Baptist to the desert for 40 days. His calling was followed by a season of testing. (Isn’t that the way it is!) When Jesus was alone, weathering the elements of an unforgiving wilderness, hungry, tired….that’s when Satan came with guns loaded. One temptation after another bombarded him to offer Jesus a way out of distress early. Instead of persevering and waiting for God’s intervention and care, Satan wanted Him to take advantage of a counterfeit fix. All Jesus had to do was worship him.
We can also be sure that temptation will involve an offer of pain relief that encourages us to circumvent waiting on God. Jesus showed us what to do. He didn’t cave no matter how weakened He was. He quoted scripture and put the enemy in His place. He stayed the course and waited on God’s grace and comfort, and eventually, deliverance.
Today’s scripture is what concludes His wilderness temptation. When the devil had been unsuccessful at every juncture point, he departed from Jesus until another opportune time. When would that be? When Jesus would be weary from ministry, misunderstood by those who once loved Him, and betrayed by Judas. These would comprise the next opportunities for temptation.
If you are in a difficult period of life, beware of the one who doesn’t play fair. Satan loves to prey on the vulnerable. Listen for the roar of the pretend lion. Have a plan. Have some scripture picked out and ready so that when you want like everything to compromise, you can withstand the temptation. Every victory tones our spiritual muscles for the ‘next time.’
And when Your wilderness was over, You entered ministry with power. I want everything You promised. Don’t let me cave. Amen