Luke 4:1-2 And Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan, and was led by the Spirit
for forty days in the wilderness, tempted by the devil. And he ate nothing in those days; and when they were ended, he was hungry.
On the First Sunday of Lent it is the custom to speak of temptation. There are some basic truths which we need to remember:
James 1:13-14 Let no one say when he is tempted, "I am tempted by God"; for God cannot be tempted with evil and he himself tempts no one; but each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire.
1 Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your strength, but with the temptation will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.
Hebrews 2:18 For because He himself has suffered and been tempted, he is able to help those who are tempted.
This is not new, it is something we have heard before, and we are tempted to excuse our actions in the ordinary way – no one’s perfect. It doesn’t matter that we regularly pray the Lord’s prayer, even the part – and lead us not into temptation – temptation still comes. Some might even quip, if I had been filled with the Holy Spirit, then I too could resist temptation.
May I suggest that the power to resist temptation, does not rest in the petition, but in the faith that trust these words "Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever." 3 little words, and they may account for all the temptation we will ever face – kingdom, power and glory – they belong to God, and in devious ways we are encouraged to claim them as our own.
We may not have the power to turn stones to bread – and we may pray for God to give us our daily bread – but it is very easy to wonder whether or not we should do something when we do not see our daily bread arriving early – will God provide, or should we take matters into our own hands – if we believe He has the power we will trust in him.
We may not want to be famous, but we do enjoy being the center of attention – we may not want a life of luxury – but we sure want to have fun once in a while – come on, you deserve it – come on, you’ve worked for it – the temptation to glory is never practical, and yet it is a temptation – it doesn’t matter that God promises to share his glory, it doesn’t matter that Christ has gone to prepare a place for us – we want it now – just a little fun….
The last thing is that temptation what you can speak of under the term, the kingdom – whether we want to be in charge or nor –we all have advise to the one who is, we’d do it different, we’d do it better…
Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory – it helps us to remember who God is and what he has done – and as we remember God’s love and mercy – as we remember how God has provided – then the temptations just aren’t so tempting – for nothing can be as good as the good things that God has prepared for those who love hiim.