Monday, March 6
Spiritual Questions: Whose are We?
Reverend Ed Archer, Associate Pastor
1 Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted there by the devil. 2 For forty days and forty nights he fasted and became very hungry. 3 During that time the devil came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become loaves of bread.” 4 But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say, ‘People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.'” 5 Then the devil took him to the holy city, Jerusalem, to the highest point of the Temple, 6 and said, “If you are the Son of God, jump off! For the Scriptures say, ‘He will order his angels to protect you. And they will hold you up with their hands so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.'” 7 Jesus responded, “The Scriptures also say, ‘You must not test the LORD your God.'” 8 Next the devil took him to the peak of a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. 9 “I will give it all to you,” he said, “if you will kneel down and worship me.” 10 “Get out of here, Satan,” Jesus told him. “For the Scriptures say, ‘You must worship the LORD your God and serve only him.'” 11 Then the devil went away, and angels came and took care of Jesus. Matthew 4:1-11 NLT
Most people tend to think of the devil as we usually see him depicted at Halloween: the classic red suit, horns on his head and having a tail, carrying a pitchfork. However, to deal with the devil is serious business.
The devil is described in Scripture as a powerful and personal being whose primary purpose is to oppose God’s work in this world. How does this happen? It happens primarily through the hindering of a Christian’s witness and usefulness through deception but also by temptation, doubt, lies, guilt and fear. When this happens, even good things can be used for evil purposes if we place the world ahead of God.
Think about it! Can we recognize modern day idol worship? In today’s world we too often worship money, power, careers, sports figures, and political leaders. Whatever holds first place in our lives or controls us is our god. We need to ask God to help us dethrone the “foreign gods” in our lives and make the true God our first priority just as Jesus did in the wilderness.
God, help us to make you the first priority always, Amen.