Believe it or not, Jesus was tempted. The book of Matthew retells the encounter that Jesus had with Satan. And for me, it’s a little different than what I normally picture when I imagine dealing with Satan himself. Here’s what we don’t find in it…
We don’t find cosmic explosions or this dramatic spiritual event where Jesus is barely holding on as this big red monster laughs and taunts him.
I say that because many people, like me, have this idea that dealing with and resisting Satan is this dramatic event that calls for super spiritual individuals to intercede so that we can survive his attacks. On the contrary, Jesus shows a simpler way to handle resisting the devil.
No one knows for sure whether Satan came face-to-face with Jesus and they had a physical encounter or whether he came to Jesus in more of an internal way through his mind (which sounds a lot like the way the devil chooses to tempt me! After all, Jesus “was tempted in every way, just as we are–yet he did not sin”-Hebrews 4:15). And if Jesus was tempted in more of an internal way- how much more encouraging is this story!
So, Jesus is tempted. What I want to look at is how, as Christians, are we supposed to “resist the devil” as James talks about? How do we ward off Satan when he is tempting us? Let’s look at what Jesus did.
Three times Satan comes to Jesus with a different temptation and three times Jesus wards off and shuts up Satan by simply quoting Scripture. Then after all three attempts, Satan leaves Jesus.
So what’s the key?
Fight lies with the truth.
Satan opens his mouth and lies spill all over Jesus- and how does he react? —There’s no fireworks or cosmic explosions or anything crazy-that’s recorded anyways. Jesus simply recognizes the temptations and lies being spoken either physically to him or mentally and he declares truth over them.
And what happens next? Satan stops. It’s that easy. Declare truth and it shuts up the evil one. Declare truth and live by it. Walk by it. Breathe it in. Say it over yourself each day. Satan’s lies have no power over us when we resist it by the truth that is embedded in the Bible.
This is why we study. This is why we as iStudy are dedicated to learn, love, and live out the truth-which is the Word of God. It is invaluable to us here on earth.
Be encouraged friends, Jesus has conquered this world!
What have been you’re experiences with this? What scriptures have helped you? We’d love to know!