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CHURCH 2000 (4 OF 12)
A SATAN FRIENDLY CHURCH
I'm real excited about our Pastors' Conference
beginning. I always enjoy that. It's one of the
highlights of the year for me.
This is a message that is on my heart and I
believe a message God would have us to hear.
The temptation of the Lord Jesus Christ is one of
the most interesting and informative scenes in all of
the life of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is helpful for
us to remember the setting of this temptation of
Jesus. It came after His baptism. Very often after
the baptism there is the battle with the devil. More
than one young convert has learned that the baptismal
waters do not drown the devil. Very soon after you
come to Christ you will find yourself perhaps tempted
as you have never been before by the devil. After the
dove comes the devil. After the voice of the father
from heaven comes the hiss of the serpent from hell.
It is also helpful for us to understand the
strategy that is involved here. Notice in verse 1 it
says that Jesus was "full of the spirit", and that He
was led "by the Spirit into the wilderness." This
lets us know that God had a particular strategy in
mind in the temptation of the Lord.
One of the purposes of the temptation of Jesus is
to display God's perfect man, the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Bible says that "Jesus was tempted in all points
like as we are, yet without sin." Sometimes when they
are building bridges or strengthening bridges, they
will conduct stress tests. They will stress these
bridges. The purpose is not to cause the bridges to
collapse, but the purpose is to show that the bridges
cannot be collapsed.
The purpose here is to demonstrate that Jesus
Christ is the perfect Son of God; though He was hit
with everything the devil had He did not yield. He
was God's perfect man. It is also intended to show
you and me how we are to encounter the temptation of
the devil and how you and I can have victory over the
devil in our lives.
When you look at these temptations you will
discover there is an appeal to the physical. He says,
"take these stones and turn them into bread." Jesus
had not been eating for many, many days. The second
temptation was the appeal to the spiritual. He said
to Jesus, "Fall down and worship me." The third
temptation was the appeal to the emotional. He said,
"Throw yourself down from the pinnacle of the temple."
The strategy of the devil has never changed. First
John 2:16 talks about the lust of the flesh--the
physical, the lust of the eye--the emotional, and the
pride of life--the spiritual.
When you and I are tempted we are always tempted
in one of these three avenues. The devil has only
three moves on the chessboard of life and you and I
need to be aware of that. The Bible tells us that we
need to not be ignorant of his devices. We need to be
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