“But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’ ”” Matthew 4:4 NKJV
In Matthew 4:1-12 We see Jesus being led into the wilderness, by the Holy Spirit, to be tempted by Satan. After Jesus fasted for forty day’s Satan’s first temptation was for Jesus to turn stones into bread, to satisfy His physical hunger. While Jesus certainly could have done this, I believe His response was an indication that God had not released Him from His fast. Jesus was waiting for a WORD from God.
Even though Jesus was fully man, He was also fully God and He with the Father when Satan attempted to take over the throne. He recognized His enemy. He knew how to respond to the tempter.
Here are three valuable lessons we can learn from these verses.
◾️ We do not have to fight the enemy in our own strength. Jesus did not respond to Satan out of emotion or logic. He responded with faith in God’s voice as the guiding force of His life. If we want to overcome the enemy we too have to learn to distinguish all other voices from the voice of the Father.
◾️ Satan knows The Word. Just because someone quotes scripture to you doesn’t mean they are a true messenger from God. When Jesus responded to the first temptation with, “It is written”, Satan changed his strategy. He shifted to quoting scripture out of context. He challenged Jesus to throw Himself off the pinnacle of the temple. Satan tried to bully Jesus into proving He was the Son of God. Jesus was confident in His relationship with the Father. He had nothing to prove, especially to His enemy! 2 Timothy 2:15(KJV) admonishes us … “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” It takes time to develop knowledge of the Word. As a Christian this must be a priority in our life if we want to be victorious. We cannot rely on others to spoon feed us the Word. We have to learn to feed ourselves. People can twist scripture to justify just about anything. When we know of heart of God we have a better understanding of His written Word.
◾️ The Word is a weapon. Even though Jesus was the Son of God, He responded to temptation with, “It is written”. Hebrews 4:12NKJV tells us: “For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” Jesus could have rebuked Satan at the first temptation, but I believe chose to withstand the temptation to show you and I that we can overcome by following His example. Take a proactive approach to temptation instead of a reactive approach. Most of us know the things that are a struggle for us to overcome. Look up, write down, and memorize scriptures that address your issues, or encourage you to press through. Have those scriptures ready and available when you need them.
PRAYER: Father, I thank You that Your Word is more powerful than any temptation I will ever face. Thank You for the written Word, and for the voice of the Holy Spirit whom You sent to teach, lead and empower us. Give me the wisdom to discern Your voice over the voice of the enemy. As I study Your Word, Father birth spiritual insight and revelation within me. I am eternally thankful that, “greater is He that is within me, than he that is in the world”! Amen