SPIRITUAL WARFARE

JESUS TEMPTED

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(Subjects in this Section)

1-JESUS, THE CHILD, GREW
2-JESUS BEING TEMPTED FORTY DAYS
3-FIRST TEMPTATION
4-SECOND TEMPTATION 
5-THIRD TEMPTATION
6-JESUS BEING TEMPTED ON THE CROSS
7-ONE CRIMINAL REPENTS
8-JESUS SAID ON THE CROSS: PROPHECIES FULFILLED
9-THE DEATH OF JESUS: PROPHECIES FULFILLED
10-VEIL OF THE TEMPLE WAS RENT

1-JESUS, THE CHILD, GREW

    AND THE CHILD (Jesus) GREW, AND WAXED STRONG IN SPIRIT, FILLED WITH WISDOM: AND THE GRACE OF GOD WAS UPON HIM-Lk 2:40. NOW WHEN ALL THE PEOPLE WERE BAPTIZED, IT CAME TO PASS, THAT JESUS ALSO BEING BAPTIZED, AND PRAYING, THE HEAVEN WAS OPENED, AND THE HOLY GHOST DESCENDED IN A BODILY SHAPE LIKE A DOVE UPON HIM, AND A VOICE CAME FROM HEAVEN, WHICH SAID, THOU ART MY BELOVED SON; IN THEE I AM WELL PLEASED. AND JESUS HIMSELF BEGAN TO BE ABOUT THIRTY YEARS OF AGE-Lk 3:21-23.

2-JESUS BEING TEMPTED FORTY DAYS: SPIRITUAL WARFARE

    AND JESUS BEING FULL OF THE HOLY GHOST RETURNED FROM JORDAN, AND WAS LED BY THE SPIRIT INTO THE WILDERNESS, BEING FORTY DAYS TEMPTED OF THE DEVIL. AND IN THOSE DAYS HE DID EAT NOTHING: AND WHEN THEY WERE ENDED, HE AFTERWARD HUNGERED-Lk 4:1,2. The wording, FORTY DAYS TEMPTED OF THE DEVIL, denotes that during this time, Jesus went through various temptations by Satan. When a person fasts for a long time (no food, only water permitted), many thoughts arise in the their mind. One of the main temptations is to give up: to not finish the fast (of seven days, ten days, twenty-one days, or forty days, or whatever) that God has called the person to do.
  
We may also note that Jesus withdrew Himself from people during His time of fasting and was led BY THE SPIRIT INTO THE WILDERNESS. Then, afterward, HE…HUNGERED.

3-FIRST TEMPTATION 

    AND THE DEVIL SAID UNTO HIM, IF THOU BE THE SON OF GOD, COMMAND THIS STONE THAT IT BE MADE BREAD-Lk 4:3.
  
Jesus was now at His weakest. He had just fasted for forty days. We may note the first temptation involves food. It comes in the form of a challenge, "if thou be," then prove it by doing this or that. We may say, this sounded reasonable, after all, Jesus was hungry. This temptation certainly would have appealed to His flesh. What really was at stake here was this: would Jesus be led of the Spirit of God? or would He be led of the devil? Would Jesus follow and obey God? or would He follow and obey the devil? Jesus is the Son of God. He had the power to turn the rocks into bread; however, it needs to be noted, that doing so would not have been the will of the Father, but rather, what Satan desired Him to do. This temptation was also devoted to "self." He was being tempted to satisfy His hunger by using His divine power. The miracles that Jesus later did benefited others, not Himself. Satan wanted Jesus to act independently from His Father. Should Jesus have been disobedient in even the smallest matter, He would not have been obedient in all things, even unto death.
  
When temptations come on you and you consider it is the devil tempting you, then you may expect to hear in your thoughts, "It is not the devil. It is only your own thoughts giving you some good advice." In other cases, you may hear, "This is God speaking to you to do this, or that." AND NO MARVEL; FOR SATAN HIMSELF IS TRANSFORMED INTO AN ANGEL OF LIGHT-2 Cor 11:14. How can we know the thoughts that come from God and the thoughts that come from Satan? The answer is by God's Word. Study, study, and study. Get to know the voice of God from the Bible so well, that you can identify the deceptions of the devil when they come. God's Word is the key. Many say, in this generation of deception we are now in, "God told me to do this, or that," yet it contradicts God's written Word. Beware.
  
Remember, Eve was also tempted with food.
  
Jesus overcame this temptation. He did not yield to Satan's subtle deception. Jesus responded with God's Word. The way to fight Satan, when he speaks to us and tempts us in our thoughts, through our flesh, or in our emotions, is by using God's Word. Jesus said, IT IS WRITTEN, THAT MAN SHALL NOT LIVE BY BREAD ALONE, BUT BY EVERY WORD OF GOD-Lk 4:4. He quoted a passage from Deut 8:3. Quoting God's Word to Satan caused him to cease this temptation and go on to another.
  
Consider what Jesus had said. His Word tells every born-again Christian how to live. We are to live BY EVERY WORD OF GOD. We are to live by the Bible.
  
The first recorded temptation or test of Satan was "IF THOU BE." Among the last temptations or tests that Jesus endured was of the same nature. Satan does not give up. He keeps trying and trying. Note the temptation, or test, as Jesus was hanging on the cross dying. AND THEY THAT PASSED BY REVILED HIM, WAGGING THEIR HEADS, AND SAYING..."IF THOU BE" THE SON OF GOD, COME DOWN FROM THE CROSS. LIKEWISE ALSO THE CHIEF PRIESTS MOCKING HIM, WITH THE SCRIBES AND ELDERS, SAID, HE SAVED OTHERS; HIMSELF HE CANNOT SAVE. IF HE BE THE KING OF ISRAEL, LET HIM NOW COME DOWN FROM THE CROSS AND WE WILL BELIEVE HIM-Mt 27:39-42.
  
The born-again Christian should be very familiar with these tactics. Satan will speak to us in our thoughts to do this or that "because." Satan will tell us to do something wrong and then give us a good reason why we should do it. He will tell us, "It is all right." He may tell us, "No one will know." He may tell you that you can accomplish what your heart desires by doing it his way, rather than God's way.
  
Consider, Jesus WAS IN ALL POINTS TEMPTED (or tested) LIKE AS WE ARE, YET WITHOUT SIN-Heb 4:15.

4-SECOND TEMPTATION 

    The second temptation we read from Matthew's Gospel. THEN THE DEVIL TAKETH HIM UP INTO THE HOLY CITY, AND SETTETH HIM ON A PINNACLE OF THE TEMPLE, AND SAITH UNTO HIM, IF THOU BE THE SON OF GOD, CAST THYSELF DOWN: FOR IT IS WRITTEN, HE SHALL GIVE HIS ANGELS CHARGE CONCERNING THEE: AND IN THEIR HANDS THEY SHALL BEAR THEE UP, LEST AT ANY TIME THOU DASH THY FOOT AGAINST A STONE-Mt 4:5,6.
  
Satan's second temptation goes a step further. This time Satan uses God's Word to tempt Jesus. Satan quoted Scripture. Understand that Satan knows Scripture well, but he distorts and twists it. He misuses Scripture by omitting parts of it and by using it out of context. Note the words, IF THOU BE THE SON OF GOD, CAST THYSELF DOWN: FOR IT IS WRITTEN, or we might say, "because." Do this or that, "because."
  
Again, Jesus overcame this temptation or test and gives us the example of how to deal with Satan. Jesus used the Word. JESUS SAID UNTO HIM, IT IS WRITTEN AGAIN, THOU SHALT NOT TEMPT THE LORD THY GOD-Mt 4:7.
  
Satan did not quote all the Scripture. He left out "IN ALL THY WAYS"-ref Ps 91:11,12. A person is protected when he obeys God.

5-THIRD TEMPTATION

    The third temptation or test reveals Satan's ultimate goal. He wants worship; he wants to be God. He is willing to give you your heart's desire in order to get your worship. Some may say, "I do not worship Satan." They do not understand that disobedience to God is a form of worshiping Satan. It is written, FOR REBELLION IS AS THE SIN OF WITCHCRAFT-I Sam 15:23.
  
AGAIN, THE DEVIL TAKETH HIM UP INTO AN EXCEEDING HIGH MOUNTAIN, AND SHOWETH HIM ALL THE KINGDOMS OF THE WORLD, AND THE GLORY OF THEM; AND SAITH UNTO HIM, ALL THESE THINGS WILL I GIVE THEE, IF THOU WILT FALL DOWN AND WORSHIP ME.
  
Satan is now, as we might say, "pulling out all stops." He offers Jesus all the kingdoms of the world and the glory of them. The price is to worship Satan. The price is to disobey God. Jesus will indeed reign and rule this world; however, Satan seems to be saying, "Why wait? You can have all the kingdoms of the world right now. Just worship me."
  
Again, Jesus gives the example of what to do when tempted: He used the Word of God. THEN SAITH JESUS UNTO HIM, GET THEE HENCE, SATAN: FOR IT IS WRITTEN, THOU SHALT WORSHIP THE LORD THY GOD, AND HIM ONLY SHALT THOU SERVE-Mt 4:8-10.
  
Jesus commanded Satan, GET THEE HENCE...FOR IT IS WRITTEN. Jesus is Lord. Jesus is Christ come in the flesh.
  
These words are for all Christians. We are to WORSHIP THE LORD THY GOD, AND HIM ONLY SHALT THOU SERVE.
  
Again, Jesus overcomes Satan's deceptions.
  
Note the following verses showing that Satan wants worship and even wants to overthrow God. It is written, O LUCIFER...THOU HAST SAID IN THINE HEART, I WILL ASCEND INTO HEAVEN, I WILL EXALT MY THRONE ABOVE THE STARS OF GOD: I WILL SIT ALSO UPON THE MOUNT OF THE CONGREGATION, IN THE SIDES OF THE NORTH: I WILL ASCEND ABOVE THE HEIGHTS OF THE CLOUDS; I WILL BE LIKE THE MOST HIGH-Isa 14:12-14. Keep in mind, once we submit to Jesus, we no longer should say, "I will," but rather, "Let God’s will be done."
  
The day is coming and is close at hand, when the Antichrist will say, yes, to this offer of being given all the kingdoms of the world and the glory of them. He will rule the world for the last three and a half years of the Tribulation, but his end is to be cast alive into the lake of fire for eternity.
  
We may note that through these temptations, Satan has appealed to the physical appetite, to personal gain, and to the desire for power and glory. So many people, in the time of temptation, fall away. As one studies the various temptations and subtle tactics that Satan used against Eve and against Jesus, many similarities can be noted.
  
God is pulling us in one direction: toward repentance, childlike faith, and obedience to Him. Satan is pulling us in another direction: toward disobedience to God.
  
When being tempted, it is not uncommon for someone to say, "I am confused. I don't know what to do." GOD IS NOT THE AUTHOR OF CONFUSION-1 Cor 14:33. Satan is.
  
Often we may feel as though we are between two ropes. One is tied to our right hand and the other to our left hand. Both ropes are pulling on us at the same time. It may feel like we are being pulled or torn apart. God is not willing that any should perish. One way that Satan attacks God is through us. We are the battlefield. The fiery darts, which sometimes seem like they are going to consume or overwhelm us, are thoughts, emotions, and our flesh. These are "self." Sometimes our stomach becomes so tied up in knots, we could almost scream. There are many people that sell their soul to Satan for some worldly lust or pleasure. It may be for a piece of bread, clothing, fame, power, or other material things that will all pass away. Our thoughts need to be focused upon doing the will of God, not our own will. It is written, SUBMIT YOURSELVES THEREFORE TO GOD. RESIST THE DEVIL, AND HE WILL FLEE FROM YOU-Ja 4:7. Our thoughts need to be kept upon Jesus, Who is our trust. THOU WILT KEEP HIM IN PERFECT PEACE, WHOSE MIND IS STAYED ON THEE: BECAUSE HE TRUSTETH IN THEE-Isa 26:3.

6-JESUS BEING TEMPTED ON THE CROSS: SPIRITUAL WARFARE

    When Jesus was crucified, there were TWO THIEVES CRUCIFIED WITH HIM, ONE ON THE RIGHT HAND, AND ANOTHER ON THE LEFT-Mt 27:38.
  
AND THEY THAT PASSED BY REVILED HIM, WAGGING THEIR HEADS, AND SAYING, THOU THAT DESTROYEST THE TEMPLE, AND BUILDEST IT IN THREE DAYS, SAVE THYSELF. IF THOU BE THE SON OF GOD, COME DOWN FROM THE CROSS-Mt 27:39,40. We may note, the first temptation Jesus endured, after having fasted forty days, was "IF THOU BE THE SON OF GOD." This was followed by a request to do something ("If…then do this or that"). Here Satan—moving through his people—uses the same type of temptation. Satan does not give up tempting us. He keeps trying, and trying, and trying.
  
Jesus had already addressed this type of temptation in Mt 4:7 with, THOU SHALT NOT TEMPT THE LORD THY GOD.
  
LIKEWISE ALSO THE CHIEF PRIESTS MOCKING HIM, WITH THE SCRIBES AND ELDERS, SAID, HE SAVED OTHERS; HIMSELF HE CANNOT SAVE. IF HE BE THE KING OF ISRAEL, LET HIM NOW COME DOWN FROM THE CROSS, AND WE WILL BELIEVE HIM. HE TRUSTED IN GOD; LET HIM DELIVER HIM NOW, IF HE WILL HAVE HIM: FOR HE SAID, I AM THE SON OF GOD. THE THIEVES ALSO, WHICH WERE CRUCIFIED WITH HIM, CAST THE SAME IN HIS TEETH-Mt 27:41-44.
  
What a temptation! One purpose Jesus came was so that people would believe in Him. Satan skillfully uses this in the temptation, as the chief priests, scribes, and elders had said they would believe in Him, "if" He would come down from the cross. Yet no temptation could move Jesus to disobey the will of His Father in heaven.
  
Little did the religious leaders realize, they were fulfilling Scripture with their mockings and their words. As it is written, in Ps 22:7,8-ALL THEY THAT SEE ME LAUGH ME TO SCORN: THEY SHOOT OUT THE LIP, THEY SHAKE THE HEAD, SAYING, HE TRUSTED ON THE LORD THAT HE WOULD DELIVER HIM: LET HIM DELIVER HIM, SEEING HE DELIGHTED IN HIM.
  
AND THE SOLDIERS ALSO MOCKED HIM, COMING TO HIM, AND OFFERING HIM VINEGAR, AND SAYING, IF THOU BE THE KING OF THE JEWS, SAVE THYSELF-Lk 23:36,37.
  
Note the multitude of people that tempted Him in the same way: they that passed by, the chief priests, the scribes, the elders, the thieves, and the soldiers.
  
Those that were mocking must have thought this Jesus was a false Messiah and that His ability to destroy the temple was gone. If He were the Christ, the Son of God, He should come down off the cross. Since He did not do this, undoubtedly, it proved to the mockers that His claims must be false. "He saved others," they reasoned, but He could not save Himself. Their words, "HE TRUSTED IN GOD; LET HIM DELIVER HIM NOW," further proved that they thought His claim of being the Son of God was false as God did not rescue Him.
  
Jesus conquered Satan’s temptations by denying Himself. He overcame Satan by only doing the will of His Father in heaven. As a result of sacrificing Himself and not yielding to Satan’s temptations, a way was now made for the world to be saved. As it is written, FOR GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD, THAT HE GAVE HIS ONLY BEGOTTEN SON, THAT WHOSOEVER BELIEVETH IN HIM SHOULD NOT PERISH, BUT HAVE EVERLASTING LIFE-Jn 3:16.
  
Consider carefully, the many ways Jesus was tempted, yet was without sin. "Follow Jesus," Who is our example.

7-ONE CRIMINAL REPENTS

    Both thieves had railed on Jesus after they were hung on the cross prior to the sixth hour-ref Mt 27:44,45; however, afterward, one repented. As it is written, AND ONE OF THE MALEFACTORS (or criminals) WHICH WERE HANGED RAILED ON HIM, SAYING, IF THOU BE CHRIST, SAVE THYSELF AND US. BUT THE OTHER ANSWERING REBUKED HIM, SAYING, DOST NOT THOU FEAR GOD, SEEING THOU ART IN THE SAME CONDEMNATION? AND WE INDEED JUSTLY; FOR WE RECEIVE THE DUE REWARD OF OUR DEEDS: BUT THIS MAN HATH DONE NOTHING AMISS. AND HE SAID UNTO JESUS, LORD, REMEMBER ME WHEN THOU COMEST INTO THY KINGDOM. AND JESUS SAID UNTO HIM, VERILY I SAY UNTO THEE, TODAY SHALT THOU BE WITH ME IN PARADISE-Lk 23:39-43.
  
Note, the repentant criminal feared God. He admitted he was wrong and that he was receiving his due reward for what he had done. He admitted Jesus had done no wrong. He believed Jesus was the Messiah and called Him, Lord, openly before all the people and was not ashamed. He asked Jesus to remember him, because he was convinced that Jesus was the Christ and had a kingdom. He had faith.
  
The response of Jesus was, TODAY SHALT THOU BE WITH ME IN PARADISE.
  
Although the Scriptures do not mention the following, we can assume that upon such a confession, the people who were mocking Jesus probably began to mock the repentant criminal and persecute him also.

8-JESUS SAID ON THE CROSS: PROPHECIES FULFILLED

9-THE DEATH OF JESUS: PROPHECIES FULFILLED

    AND WHEN JESUS HAD CRIED WITH A LOUD VOICE, HE SAID, FATHER, INTO THY HANDS I COMMEND MY SPIRIT: AND HAVING SAID THUS, HE GAVE UP THE GHOST-Lk 23:46.
  
AND, BEHOLD, THE VEIL OF THE TEMPLE WAS RENT IN TWAIN (or torn in two) FROM THE TOP TO THE BOTTOM; AND THE EARTH DID QUAKE, AND THE ROCKS RENT (or split)-Mt 27:51.
  
THEN CAME THE SOLDIERS, AND BRAKE THE LEGS OF THE FIRST, AND OF THE OTHER WHICH WAS CRUCIFIED WITH HIM. BUT WHEN THEY CAME TO JESUS, AND SAW THAT HE WAS DEAD ALREADY, THEY BREAK NOT HIS LEGS-Jn 19:32,33. THAT THE SCRIPTURE SHOULD BE FULFILLED-Jn 19:36. HE KEEPETH ALL HIS BONES: NOT ONE OF THEM IS BROKEN-Ps 34:20. Also, regarding the Passover lamb, THEY SHALL LEAVE NONE OF IT UNTO THE MORNING, NOR BREAK ANY BONE OF IT-Num 9:12.
  
BUT ONE OF THE SOLDIERS WITH A SPEAR PIERCED HIS SIDE, AND FORTHWITH CAME THERE OUT BLOOD AND WATER-Jn 19:34. For ANOTHER SCRIPTURE SAITH-Jn 19:37, THEY SHALL LOOK UPON ME WHOM THEY HAVE PIERCED-Zech 12:10.
  
HE SHALL SEE THE TRAVAIL (or suffering) OF HIS SOUL, AND SHALL BE SATISFIED: BY HIS KNOWLEDGE SHALL MY RIGHTEOUS SERVANT JUSTIFY MANY; FOR HE SHALL BEAR THEIR INIQUITIES-Isa 53:11. ALL WE LIKE SHEEP HAVE GONE ASTRAY; WE HAVE TURNED EVERY ONE TO HIS OWN WAY; AND THE LORD HATH LAID UPON HIM THE INIQUITY OF US ALL-Isa 53:6.
  
YET IT PLEASED THE LORD TO BRUISE (or crush) HIM; HE HATH PUT HIM TO GRIEF (AND CAUSE HIM TO SUFFER-NIV): WHEN THOU SHALT MAKE HIS SOUL AN OFFERING FOR SIN, HE SHALL SEE HIS SEED (offspring), HE SHALL PROLONG HIS DAYS, AND THE PLEASURE OF THE LORD SHALL PROSPER IN HIS HAND-Isa 53:10.
  
THEREFORE WILL I DIVIDE HIM A PORTION WITH THE GREAT, AND HE SHALL DIVIDE THE SPOIL WITH THE STRONG; BECAUSE HE HATH POURED OUT HIS SOUL UNTO DEATH: AND HE WAS NUMBERED WITH THE TRANSGRESSORS; AND HE BARE THE SIN OF MANY, AND MADE INTERCESSION FOR THE TRANSGRESSORS-Isa 53:12.
HE WAS CUT OFF OUT OF THE LAND OF THE LIVING-Isa 53:8. The Messiah was cut off-ref Dan 9:26.

10-VEIL OF THE TEMPLE WAS RENT

    AND, BEHOLD, THE VEIL OF THE TEMPLE WAS RENT IN TWAIN FROM THE TOP TO THE BOTTOM (or was torn in two); AND THE EARTH DID QUAKE, AND THE ROCKS RENT-Mt 27:51. This symbolized that man now had direct access to God through the atoning sacrifice of Christ, His death. The work was finished. A new and living way had now opened the Holy of Holies in the temple. It was not torn from the bottom to the top as man might do it, but rather from the top to the bottom, signifying that God had done it. The way to God was now open to everyone through Jesus Christ.

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