Satan pulled out every trick in his back pocket to get Jesus to sin during His forty-day trek in the wilderness. He waited until Jesus was hungry and tired and then he went on the prowl. Isn’t it just like the enemy to tempt us when we are down? Jesus was victorious despite Satan’s attempts to thwart God’s plan of redemption. He wanted Jesus to fall into sin and disobedience so He could not be the sinless Savior who gave Himself as a perfect sacrifice for us.
Each time Jesus was tempted by Satan He quoted the book of Deuteronomy, linking His experience to the Israelites’ forty years of testing in the wilderness (Matt. 4:1-11, ESV). They weren’t as successful, thus the need for Jesus, as the spotless Lamb.
Finally, Jesus told Satan to get lost. “Be gone, Satan” (Matt. 4:10)! Because of this we now have a weapon in our back pocket that we can pull out when the enemy is tempting us. When we couple this phrase with Jesus Christ’s mighty name, he must flee. He has no choice. The ESV Study Bible explains that God never tempts us. But He can use the circumstances to test a person’s character. God always gives us a way out. We may not see it or believe it, but it is true. Satan will try to keep us down and make us think there are no options. But the door is always open. There is always a choice (I Cor. 10:13).
As Christ-followers, we are to tell others about the door.
A braided cord is strong because it has many layers woven together to form a bond that can withstand more than a single strand can on its own. Likewise, the right Christian community and friends who work together in the Body of Christ can withstand the enemy and his tactics. We are called to support, encourage, and even challenge each other in keeping the ways of the Lord. We can use our gifts and talents to help each other grow closer to God, stay strong, and diligent, even when everything around us is discouraging. The braided cord is also symbolic of the Trinity- God, the Father, God, the Son, and God, the Holy Spirit. Three in One. Alone they are a powerful deity in and of themselves; together they are ultimately the powerful force that we can lean on for strength to get us through rough times.
God will lift us high on wings like eagles (Is. 40:31), to soar above our circumstances and temporary mis- comings of this world. Those who fight off the enemy and hold their ground to give honor to God in obedience will receive a crown of glory. Look not to the left or the right, but straight into the eyes of Jesus, Your Savior, King, and Friend.
This is reason to sing, dance, laugh, love, and be joyful; rejoicing in the love of Christ as the ultimate Savior and Friend who is capable of changing lives through His grace and goodness. His righteousness is our saving grace. There is a space reserved in our hearts for the Holy Spirit. When we defile our bodies, we are leaving no room for God. The more room we make through our obedience to His Word, the more of His presence we will receive.
“You shall be holy, for I am Holy” (I Peter 1:16).
“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2).