The temptation Jesus encounters after his baptism sounds like a sword fight. Satan begins by wielding his blade of doubt: If you are the Son of God… Its sting misses Jesus because the Son of God suffered no confusion as to His identity. He counters with a thrust of the most powerful sword in the universe: It is written.
Satan advances again. This time he displays before Jesus all the authority and splendor of the world and promises to give it to Him if Jesus worships him. Jesus, again, deflects the enemy’s weapon: It is written.
Satan is sly. Seeing how well Jesus’ sword is working, he makes one last desperate attempt to strike a final blow by turning Jesus’ sword against Him: For it is written. But His use of the Word of God doesn’t brandish the same power. In fact, one imagines the sword burning right through his spiny fingers as Jesus declares, “It is said: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test’” (Luke 4:12).
The contest ends. Satan retreats, slinking away in the darkness. And Jesus returns from this magnificent duel in the power of the Spirit.
Each time we use the Word of God to resist temptation we grow in the power of the Spirit. Let’s not forget the tremendous weapon God has entrusted to us. This sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God, proves to be living, active, sharp and penetrating. It delivers us from evil every time (Hebrews 4:12).
Thank you Father for equipping us to fight against a relentless foe. Thank you for delivering us from evil through the power of your Word. May we wield the Word of God fearlessly and have victory over temptation. Amen.
Go Deeper — Memorize scriptures that will help you resist temptation when it comes. Some suggestions are 1 Corinthians 10:13, Matthew 26:41, James 1:2, Proverbs 3:5-6, and Psalm 46:1. Then praise God for the victory!
Photo Credit: Vincent Guth