Overcoming Temptation by Christina Patterson

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Overcoming Temptation
Series: Believing Better: Overcoming the Lies That Prevent Us from Living Free in Christ
Christina Patterson
John 8:44

As we read last session Jesus being tempted by the devil seems like a simple conversation. There are no raised voices, there is no cursing, there’s no hitting or punching. But what appears to be an innocent conversation is actually all out war.

The fate of our souls rests on how this conversation turns out. Now we have read the passage so we have the luxury of knowing that Jesus is victorious over each temptation. But did you notice that satan does not come to Jesus and tempt Jesus to sleep with a prostitute, or to kill a person or to steal something. His temptations are more sneaky and cunning than that. And if you’ve been walking with the Lord long enough your temptations are not that straight forward either. Satan is crafty and uses the power of suggestion and lies by omission to try to trick us into falling.  Listen to what Jesus says about Satan in John 8:44:

When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.

Everything that comes out of his mouth is a lie. And Satan’s lies are so cunning that even the strongest of Christians is susceptible to falling if not aware and truly on guard. So as we listen in on this conversation I want to pull out the lies and expose each one in the light of God’s truth that we may not fall for the same lies, that we may not be deceived by the enemies trickery and, that we will better stand on and believe in God’s truth as we fight for the lives He died for us to live.

In Jesus’ first temptation, He is tempted to turn rocks into loathes bread. In Matthew 4:3-4 we read:

The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.” Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.”

Though our translation has Satan saying “if you are the son of God”, most scholars agree that this is better understood “since you are the son of God”. Satan knew who Jesus was, there was no doubt in his mind that Jesus was God’s Son. What satan is doing is appealing for Jesus to use His position as Son to His own advantage. Satan is not questioning if Jesus can do it, he’s saying since you can, why don’t you?

And although Jesus could turn the rock to bread, he denies Himself and restrains His power to show us something greater, to show us that life is not all about fulfilling our physical desires even when we have the means to. That just because you can do something does not mean that you should. Just because you can have all that this world has to offer does not mean you have God’s best. Because God is greater than this world and the l ...

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