We began looking at the temptation of Jesus Christ last week, paying close attention to the bait and hook in Satan’s sinister designs. This week we’re slowing down to apply the same text (Luke 4:1-13) to our lives, so that we can better understand the nature of temptation, how to resist the ploys of the Evil One and find victory in Jesus Christ.
Satan comes to Jesus when he is alone and hungry. When we are by ourselves and feeling empty, we are often more susceptible to temptation.
- Has being alone or feeling empty (depression, loneliness, stress, etc.) ever played a part in your yielding to temptation? The Scripture calls us to fight and flee temptation (James 4:7; I Cor.10:14). What could you put in place (fighting and fleeing) to protect yourself in the circumstances that cause you the most temptation?
- Don’t try to do this on your own. Tell your spouse, friend, or HFG how they can pray and establish accountability with you in this area.
Notice also that Satan comes to Jesus at the point he is committing Himself to His Father’s will. When you are experiencing sweet fellowship and commitment to the Lord, you will often become a target for the Evil One.
- Have you found that the temptations of Satan come when you are seeking to follow God’s will? Be specific. Identify any reoccurring patterns.
- How would be filled and led by the Holy Spirit empower you to patiently endure the temptation right now?
We are often caught flatfooted during temptation. Jesus is ready with the sword of the Spirit. He fights off temptation with the Word of God.
- Take time right now and identify a Scripture passage or two that directly relates to the temptation you identified above, or the temptation you are facing the most.
- Meditate and memorize these Scriptures. Pray that when temptation comes, these Scriptures will help you defeat the Enemy of your soul.
Underneath the presenting temptation, there’s always a lie about your identity. Satan always seeks to convince us that we are either better or worse than we actually are. In consequence, we fall into either pride or despair.
- What lie about yourself do you too often believe? Be honest with yourself.
- How does the lie above play into your battles with pride and despair? How can you see that lie setting you up for a fall?
- Take time to read and study Romans chapter 5-8. What would the gospel truths of these chapters teach you about your true identity? Are you able to consistently live from this identity?