Along the Way

18 03 2012
"The Temptation of Christ

"The Temptation of Christ" by Liturgical artist, painter Eric Armusik http://www.ericarmusik.com

(Disciple) Greek- “Learner” Unger’s also adds, “…one who professes to have learned certain principles from another and maintains them on that other’s authority.”

Discipleship is what we do “Along the Way” as we live our life in Christ. We don’t get it perfect every day (personally, nowhere near perfect), but it’s what we strive toward by following the One who is perfect.

In Matthew chapter four, focusing on verses 1-4 where Jesus is tempted by Satan. Let’s take a look at what happens:

1.     Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.

2.     After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry.

3.     The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these  stones to become bread.”

4.     Jesus answered, “It is written: Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.”

That got me to thinking about accomplishing by having clear: Direction; goal(s); vision and focus. To go through life without these attributes, we (absolutely) will be…

Tempted by Satan to be:

  • Distracted from our goal.
  • Discouraged about our goal.
  • Doubt our ability to achieve our goal.
  • Doubt God’s will and love for our lives.
  • Negative regarding the reality of God’s word about His presence; His provision and His peace for our lives, our calling and our tasks in the earth.

Out there in the wilderness, Jesus showed us the way for our lives today. Jesus was tempted just like we are today to ‘throw in the towel,’ blame our Mother/Father/Others; blame the circumstances of our birth; our past and our present; get stressed and pick up the double-fudge ice cream (okay, maybe that’s T.M.I.), but you get my drift.

In today’s society, mega-bucks are made by selling us on the lie that we should ‘throw in the towel,’ blame Mom and Dad, blame the fact that we are tall, short, skinny, fat, black, white, underprivileged, too rich, or too poor. In fact, extreme time and money is spent on marketing campaigns targeting us all to ‘do’ something about it by buying their products.

Additionally, there are folks keeping secrets in the Church pews. Whenever the Minister teaches on the temptation of Christ from the book of Matthew; the secret-thinking says:  “Yeah, that’s fine for Jesus, but He’s the Son of God; I’m just me.” 

We have forgotten that Jesus’ example is for us to imitate. How do we combat the temptations of Satan, the ‘Prince of the Power-of-the-Air’ himself; when he was up against Jesus: The carpenter’s kid, born out-of-wedlock, working-class, uneducated, from a small, poor township; a young guy who was out there in the wilderness with (seemingly) no one to help Him, but all of heaven watching?  That was a big [hold your breath and lean forward] moment if ever there was one, but Jesus quoted the word of God at each and every instance of Satan’s temptation. The main lesson is that the word of God is our only winning defense against the temptations of Satan-then, now and forever.

That’s it; just the word of God-nothing else. That seems way too easy doesn’t it? However, Jesus also said regarding our being His disciple (a disciplined follower); which we are if we are Christians: “My yoke is easy and my burden is light.”Matthew 11:30. Our ‘yoke’ then is the service required and our ‘burden’ is to fulfill that requirement in order to live abundantly in the earth: Take Him at His word; believe His word; apply His word to our life and speak His word about our life. That’s all folks!

However, this all calls for a basic decision; we must decide to: Hear that word, agree with that word; live that word; behave that word and speak that word in relation to our own lives and where we stand today. In fact Joshua said it best:  “…As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” Joshua 24:15b

To bring this out further, we will be taking a look at the book of James chapter one, verse eight (8); where James declares: “A double-minded man (person) is unstable in all his ways.”

Until next time: Be Blessed! The Lightkeeper

By the way: Isn’t this a FABULOUS painting by Eric Armusik? Visit his website and see what else he’s up to.  Liturgical artist, painter Eric Armusik  http://www.ericarmusik.com

 

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