Wilderness Day 10 Here To Help: Digging Deeper

Digging Deeper Days

Finding the original intent of Scripture and making good application to our everyday lives as we become equipped to correctly handle the Word of Truth!

Today is 2-for-1 Friday!
Check out Here To  Help!

The Questions

1) What temptations did Jesus face?

2) How does Jesus’ response to temptation instruct us when we encounter temptation?

3) How does God help us in our seasons of waiting and temptation?

Matthew 4:1-11

Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2 After he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. 3 Then the tempter approached him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”

4 He answered, “It is written: Man must not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.”

5 Then the devil took him to the holy city, had him stand on the pinnacle of the temple, 6 and said to him,
“If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down.
For it is written:

He will give his angels orders concerning you,
and they will support you with their hands
so that you will not strike
your foot against a stone.”

7 Jesus told him, “It is also written: Do not test the Lord your God.”

8 Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. 9 And he said to him, “I will give you all these things if you will fall down and worship me.”

10 Then Jesus told him, “Go away, Satan!
For it is written: Worship the Lord your God and serve only him.”

11 Then the devil left him, and angels came and began to serve him.

Original Intent

1) What temptations did Jesus face?
Scripture recounts the temptation of Jesus immediately following His baptism where He publicly experienced communion with, and commendation from, God the Father through the Holy Spirit. The Spirit alighted on Jesus and God spoke, “This is my Son, with whom I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:17) Immediately following this pinnacle experience in the river, Jesus was led into the desert to be tempted. The Holy Spirit intentionally led Jesus into a place where the devil would tempt Him. We may wonder at this. Why would a loving God lead Jesus to a place to encounter the devil? Though God does not tempt us to sin (James 1:13), He does allow temptation to come our way. Jesus was tempted in three specific ways in the desert: 1) He was tempted to fulfill His own desires rather than depending on God 2) He was tempted to test God’s provision and protection 3) He was tempted to lean into idolatry and self-promotion rather than give God glory and worship. The capacity for sin exists under each of these temptations just as it does for us. Sloth, lust, or greed can make us pursue our own comfort instead of trusting God to provide. Fear and doubt will make us question God’s goodness and His active role in our lives. Pride will cause us to seek our own glory instead of His. Unbelief, or weakness of faith, causes us to pursue idolatry.

2) How does Jesus’ response to temptation instruct us when we encounter temptation?
Jesus quoted Scripture to refute the lies of the devil and his desirable temptations. This action not only required Christ to have previously memorized these passages, but it also necessitated His life to genuinely echo the truths He espoused as evidence of His faith. It is faith that puts out the enemy’s attacks, “In every situation take up the shield of faith with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.” (Ephesians 6:16) Some scholars say Jesus was potentially meditating on the Torah (the first five books of the Old Testament) when He was in the desert as He quoted from it directly when attacked by Satan. Jesus quoted Deuteronomy 8:3 as He told Satan (and reminded Himself in the process), “Man must not live on bread alone but on every Word that comes from the mouth of God.” (Matthew 4:4) Then He rebukes Satan from the Torah, “Do not test the Lord your God.” (Matthew 4:7, Deuteronomy 6:16) Jesus refused to act in a way that would question God’s goodness or His promises for His knowledge of God and His trust in His character was unshakeable. Finally, Jesus instructed Satan from the Torah, “You shall worship the Lord your God and Him only shall you serve.” (Matthew 4:10, Deuteronomy 6:13) Jesus stood firm in His allegiance to God and refused to serve Himself or worship Satan by doing so. Jesus’ instruction was preceded by a direct command, “Go away, Satan!” (verse 10) He casts the devil away from Himself with that final interaction. The devil left Him when commanded and angels came and ministered to Jesus. (verse 11)

3) How does God help us in our seasons of waiting and temptation?
Not only does Jesus’ wilderness experience provide rich insights into how to fight our enemy, we also see God’s provision in action, responding to faith. He provides His word as weaponry, His power to flee sin, and His ministry of comfort. God’s Word provided the answer Jesus could use to oppose Satan at every level; nothing else was needed to achieve a victorious outcome. God promises that when we submit to Him in faith, and resist the devil, he will flee. (James 4:7) In Christ, we have definitive victory over the enemy! His Word also gave Jesus an effective focus point instead of the lusting allures of Satan. Christ was actively putting into practice the truths of the psalmist, “The precepts of the Lord are right, making the heart glad; the command of the Lord is radiant, making the eyes light up.” (Psalm 19:7-11) When Eve fell into temptation, she listened to the devil, questioned God, and doubted His goodness, but when Jesus was tempted, He actively relied on Scripture, trusting its authoritative effectiveness to rebuke Satan. God also provided the power to resist the devil and walk away from his schemes. (Ephesians 6:11) Even though Jesus had been fasting for forty days in desert solitude, He didn’t succumb to believing lies that He was alone or powerless. God empowered Jesus to resist the devil’s temptations instead of relying on human strength. Finally, when the devil left Jesus, angels came and ministered to Jesus, bringing the comfort of God’s compassionate heart. (verse 11)

Everyday Application

1) What temptations did Jesus face?
Hebrews 4:15 says, “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who has been tempted in every way as we are, yet without sin.” (emphasis mine) There is no temptation we face that Jesus Himself did not stand against. He faced every form of temptation and desire in His humanity that besets us. In 1 Corinthians 10:13, God tells us, “No temptation has come upon you except what is common to humanity. But God is faithful; He will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation He will also provide the way out so that you may be able to bear it.” Every temptation Jesus faced is common to man, meaning we all will face similar temptations. What a blessing to serve a God who not only walked on earth in human form, but willingly faced the same temptations to serve ourselves and satisfy our own cravings in our own ways instead of God’s. As a result, Christ sympathizes with us not as an onlooker, but as God with us.

2) How does Jesus’ response to temptation instruct us when we encounter temptation?
The phrase “must not live by” in the verse Jesus quoted refers to the act of breathing in Hebrew. We sustain our life by breath, and equally so, our life must be sustained by the Word of God. “Must not live by” also refers to how we preserve our life and grow into maturity. The pathway to growing up in Christ is through immersion in God’s Word just as Jesus modeled. Putting God to the test, in the Hebrew translation of Deuteronomy 6:16, involves the need for another to prove a truth. We aren’t to put God in a position where we look at His Word and say, “Oh yeah, God? Well, prove it.” This heart attitude tests God in a dishonoring fashion; it is the antithesis of faith. We are not condemned for honest doubts, but testing God is a sin. We are exhorted to live a life that doesn’t put God to the test in a mocking sense of stubborn disbelief. In Hebrew, “worship” as quoted in Deuteronomy 6:13 means to serve. Sometimes we might associate worship with singing in church, and certainly, our hearts display value toward God when we sing to the Lord whether in community or in solitude. In Scripture, however, worship takes on a fuller meaning. In Romans 12:1-2, Paul instructs believers to worship God with the whole of their lives. “Therefore, brothers and sisters, in view of the mercies of God, I urge you to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God; this is your true worship.” This is true worship! Satan tempted Jesus to serve Himself and cast aside worshiping God. Jesus responded by stating He was determined to worship (serve) God alone.

3) How does God help us in our seasons of waiting and temptation?
Though we are faithless, disobedient, or wander into doubt, fear, or rebellion, God remains unshakably faithful. (1 Corinthians 10:13) He will not allow us to be tempted beyond our ability to withstand, but this ability isn’t our human strength. Rather, it’s the power available to us by God’s Spirit through His Word. Though we are tempted to sin, God provides Himself as means of escape. When waiting in the wilderness, we are easily distracted from God and His Word; temptation abounds. Scripture repeatedly reminds us of the blessing and wisdom of waiting on the Lord. (Psalm 27:14, Psalm 37:7, Isaiah 40:31, Lamentations 3:26) We may believe God is slow to answer and we fear prolonged waiting equals hardship, pain, or devastation. Still, God assures us He is never late. “The Lord does not delay His promise, as some understand delay.” (2 Peter 3:9) Often, God’s delay allows us to grow in trusting Him instead of ourselves. Consider Isaiah 30:18, “Therefore the Lord is waiting to show you mercy, and is rising up to show you compassion, for the Lord is a just God. All who wait patiently for Him are happy.” In waiting, we are tempted to forget God’s constant goodness and love. Remembering truth helps us endure through hardship rather than choose sin. In 2 Peter 1:3, God reminds “His divine power has given us everything required for life and godliness through the knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness.” Whether we are being tempted, are in a season of waiting, or struggle with loneliness, discouragement, or fear, we have everything we need to rely on God. He will battle for us and continue providing Himself as a shield in the space of our lack. As He protected Jesus in the desert, so He lovingly does for us.

What do YOU think?! Share Here!
Missing the connection to our other Journey Study today?
Catch up with Here To Help!

Digging Deeper is for Everyone!

1) Take this passage (or any other passage).
2) Read it, and the verses around it,
several times
3) Write down your questions
as you think of them.
4) Ask specific culture related questions and be ready to dig around for your answers. Google them, use www.studylight.org, or look them up in a study Bible and read the footnotes (click on the little letters next to a word and it will show you
other related verses!). (www.esvbible.org)
5) Check your applications with other trusted Christians that you are in community with and embrace the fullness of God
in your everyday!

Digging Deeper Community

Share What You’ve Learned!
Pray Together!
Join us in the GT Facebook Community!

Our Current Study Theme!

This is Wilderness Week Two!
Don’t miss out on the discussion!
Sign up
to receive every GT Journey Study!

Why Dig Deeper?

Finding the original meaning is a huge deal when we study Scripture and can make all the difference in our understanding as we apply God’s truths to our everyday lives.

In our modern-day relationships, we want people to understand our original intention as we communicate; how much more so between God and humanity?!

Here’s a little bit more on why we take Digging Deeper so seriously.

Study Tools

We love getting help while we study and www.studylight.org is one of many excellent resources, providing the original Hebrew (Old Testament) or Greek (New Testament) with an English translation.

Want to know more about a specific word in a verse? Click on “Strong’s Interlinear Bible” then click the word you’d like to study. Discover “origin”, “definition” and hear the original pronunciation – That Is Awesome!

Want more background? Click “Study Tools”, then pick a few commentaries to read their scholarly approach, keeping in mind that just because a commentary says it, doesn’t mean it’s true. (just like the internet :-))

Memorize It!

Download this week’s verse and make it your phone’s lockscreen!
Tap and hold on your mobile device to save.