“Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.” — Matthew 4:1
Have you ever felt tested by the Lord? Have you experienced something in your life being driven by a divine nature? Did you ask yourself, “Is this a test from God Himself?”
There are times in our lives when the Lord will test us. He will never tempt us, but He will surely test us. The result of our testing is either a pass or fail grade. God does not grade on a curve, or allow for extra credit for going over and above what He requires of us, which is our faithfulness. So how are you doing when tested? Do you pass each test with flying colors, or do you fail miserably, or miss it by the skin of your teeth? How can you live in faithfulness to God throughout all your trials and testing in your life, even those of a divine nature by the Holy One?
In Matthew 4, we read the account of the temptation of Jesus by the devil. God will never tempt us, but the devil certainly will. What is noticeable is the fact that “Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil” (Matthew 4:1). Jesus was indeed tempted by the devil, but it was through the leading of the Spirit that Jesus submitted to a 40-day and 40-night’s stay in the wilderness. Jesus, while tempted by the devil for 40 days without food or drink, was presented with three challenging temptations. It was through these three temptations that Jesus “was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin” (Hebrews 4:15, NKJV).
We may find it hard to understand how Jesus was tempted in every way we are today. It is even more puzzling since Jesus is God. How could He be tempted in the same way? We find the answer in the fact that He is fully God and also fully man. The temptations were real. He withstood every one of them by relying on the Word of God.
We are never beyond being tempted in our world. The devil and his cohorts are actively pursuing. In all our temptations we are to look to the Word of God. Let us not confuse the testing of God with the temptation of the evil one. We understand the Lord’s desire to lead us to faithfulness and righteousness. May we look to our example, Jesus Christ, who, being led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil, overcame in all points tempted.
— Loring Schultz
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