After fasting forty days and forty nights, [Jesus] was hungry. The tempter came to Him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread… Throw yourself down… Bow down and worship me.” Jesus said to him, “Away from Me, Satan!” — Matthew 4:2-3, Matthew 4:9-10
What a sweet time with the Lord this morning, the sun warming your back as God’s truth warmed your heart — and then came the phone call: “I got a pink slip, honey.”
The enemy’s timing can be too perfect. Too horribly perfect. A rich time with Jesus can fade to nothingness when the world crashes in.
In Matthew’s gospel,
This is My Son, whom I love; with Him I am well pleased. — Matthew 3:17
is immediately followed by,
Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. — Matthew 4:1
Soul-wrenching temptation by the too-clever devil crashed in after Jesus’ empowering baptism and forty-day communion with the Father.
Yet, despite physical weakness after a forty-day fast, Jesus stood strong in God’s truth, countering Satan’s temptations with the Lord’s Word, and finally commanding the tempter to leave.
The devil left Him, and angels came and attended Him. — Matthew 4:11
The same weapon by which Jesus defeated Satan is available to you: The Word of God.
Excerpted with permission from The Story Devotional, copyright Zondervan.
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You can have had a full day at a conference or weekend at a retreat of remarkable spiritual encouragement, exhortation, Spirit-infused worship, and closeness with God Almighty, and before you hit the door to go home, get an email of horrible, scary news that takes the wind out of you. The enemy is good at his job and he knows just when and how to strike to do potentially the most damage. Hold strong, friend! God is with you! Reread the Scriptures that tell how Jesus responded and do the same. Speak back to the Devil and tell him to get behind Jesus! Come join the conversation on our blog! We want to hear from you about spiritual warfare and how to stand strong against temptation. ~ Devotionals Daily