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The Temptations of Jesus Christ
CrossroadsInitiavtive.com ^ | not available | Jeff Cavins

Posted on 02/26/2012 4:36:22 PM PST by Salvation

 The Temptations of Jesus Christ

 

by Jeff Cavins

 

Jeff Cavins - The Great Adventure

Some people give in when confronted with temptation in their lives. Some just do the best they can. In this week’s Gospel reading [the first Sunday in Lent] we have an inside look at how Jesus overcame temptation with God’s word.  

When Jesus came on the scene in Israel 2,000 years ago, the Romans were occupying the land and Israel was feeling the weight of that oppressive government. The Jews were expecting the Messiah to come at anytime to liberate them. After all, great kings of Israel’s past had all demonstrated their leadership by confronting the enemy and bringing about a great victory. David defeated Goliath, Hezekiah kept the Assyrian army at bay, and Judas Maccabees led a revolt against the evil Seleucid dynasty. There was speculation that Jesus would lead a revolt against Rome and return Israel to her glory days. 

But was Rome the root cause of Israel’s situation? How many times do we find ourselves in trouble, only to blame our situation on the wrong root cause? The root cause of Israel’s dilemma was that she was still in spiritual exile as a result of years of sin and refusing to serve the one true God. Yes, sin is our problem. 

The first thing Jesus did in his public ministry was to confront the real enemy of Israel, the devil. In this week’s Gospel reading Jesus was led out into the wilderness where after 40 days he would withstand three temptations. In order to understand why Jesus faced these three particular temptations we need to understand that Jesus’ entire life was in essence a reliving of the history of Israel in the Old Testament. 

After escaping the bondage of Egypt, the children of Israel, during their 40 years in the wilderness, failed at three major temptations. Their first failure was refusing to trust God for their daily bread. They grumbled and blamed Moses for bringing them out from the “comfort” of their bondage in Egypt (Exodus 16). Their second failing involved their lack of trust to provide water for them (Exodus 17), and lastly the children of Israel broke their faith in God with the worship of the golden calf (Exodus 32). The story of these events are recapped in the book of Deuteronomy, the very book that Jesus quotes to the devil during his temptation in the wilderness.  

Jesus, after 40 days and nights of fasting, was tempted by the devil to trust in himself rather than in his father in heaven. Instead of falling, like the children of Israel had, Jesus would be triumphant, pre-enacting what he would do for the world on the cross: conquer sin and defeat the enemy. 

Jesus’ first temptation was in the area of life’s necessities — food — the same area in which the children of Israel showed their lack of trust. The enemy tests Jesus’ identity by saying, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.” Jesus responded, “It is written, ‘Man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’” Notice that the enemy focuses on Jesus’ identity and relationship with God the Father by saying, “If you are the Son of God.” Often our temptations will test our identity as sons and daughters of God. How often we think to ourselves, “If God really loved me, then I wouldn’t be in this situation.”  

In the second temptation, the devil tries to trip up Jesus by getting him to tempt God by throwing himself off the pinnacle of the temple. Psalm 91 says, “He will give his angels charge of you, and on their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.” If Jesus would have jumped off of the temple, it would have been for the purpose of seeing if Psalm 91 were true. Jesus didn’t have to jump to prove his trust in the Father; he demonstrated it by trusting in God’s word. Jesus quotes Deuteronomy 6:16, “You shall not tempt the Lord your God.” 

How many times do we test the Lord by saying, “Lord if you do so and so for me then I’ll know that you love me.” 

In the third temptation the devil pulls out all stops to get Jesus to worship him. This corresponds to when Israel worshipped the golden calf in Exodus 32. Once again Jesus answers from Deuteronomy 6:13-14: “It is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve.” 

In the end, Jesus is triumphant over these three temptations and the devil flees. Contained in this week’s Gospel reading is the secret to overcoming the various temptations we face. Knowing our identity as sons and daughters of God, we trust in him for all we need and rely on his word as assurance.
ACTIVITIES

• Think about the areas of your life in which you experience temptation and commit those areas to Christ.

• Combat the vices in your life by praying for and developing virtue. The list below will help you as a guide.

 

VICE

VIRTUE

1.

Pride

Humility

2.

Avarice

Generosity

3.

Envy

Charity

4.

Wrath

Meekness

5.

Lust

Chastity

6.

Gluttony

Temperance

7.

Sloth

Diligence

 

This article by Jeff Cavins originally appeared in Envoy Magazine and is reproduced here with the permission of the author.



TOPICS: Apologetics; Catholic; History; Theology
KEYWORDS: 40days; catholic; jesuschrist
Mark's Gospel doesn't relate the three temptations, but rather talks about the "wild beasts". What/Who are the wild beasts in our lives?
1 posted on 02/26/2012 4:36:26 PM PST by Salvation
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To: nickcarraway; NYer; ELS; Pyro7480; livius; ArrogantBustard; Catholicguy; RobbyS; marshmallow; ...
Catholic Discussion Ping!

If you aren’t on this ping list NOW and would like to be on it, please Freepmail me.

2 posted on 02/26/2012 4:39:43 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

Gospel Mk 1:12-15

The Spirit drove Jesus out into the desert,
and he remained in the desert for forty days,
tempted by Satan.
He was among wild beasts,
and the angels ministered to him.

After John had been arrested,
Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the gospel of God:
"This is the time of fulfillment.
The kingdom of God is at hand.
Repent, and believe in the gospel."

3 posted on 02/26/2012 4:41:47 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation

Salvation is all about Jesus. He is the redeemer and He is the savoir of souls. I delare that Jesus is my savoir I my eternity rests in Him. Thank you Jesus for being my friend and savior for all eternity rests in you.


4 posted on 02/26/2012 4:44:04 PM PST by Son-Joshua (son-joshua)
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To: Salvation; lilycicero; MaryLou1; glock rocks; JPG; VinceASA; Monkey Face; RIghtwardHo; ...
+

Freep-mail me to get on or off my pro-life and Catholic List:

Add me / Remove me

Please ping me to note-worthy Pro-Life or Catholic threads, or other threads of general interest.


5 posted on 02/26/2012 4:53:15 PM PST by narses
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To: Son-Joshua

So are you saying that you have no wild beasts — sin — in your life?

Guess you already have a halo.


6 posted on 02/26/2012 5:10:21 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation

What sprit drove Jesus is a name attached to the spirit, The devil, God? Anyone know


7 posted on 02/26/2012 5:13:38 PM PST by reefdiver ("Let His day's be few And another takes His office")
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To: reefdiver

It is capitalized. The Holy Spirit.


8 posted on 02/26/2012 5:23:10 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
The Temptations of Jesus Christ
Christ's temptation and ours (Reflection for the First Sunday of Lent)
Christ's temptation and ours
THE PATHOLOGY OF POWER: 3rd temptation of Christ - Part 1
9 posted on 02/26/2012 5:25:09 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: reefdiver; Salvation
What sprit drove Jesus is a name attached to the spirit, The devil, God? Anyone know

Look at the context. This entire section is bracketed by the following verses:

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

Then the devil left Jesus. Angels came and took care of him.

There has never been any supposition anywhere that the spirit is anyone but the Holy Spirit. The experience in the desert is preceded by God's spirit leading him there. The experience is followed by God's angels ministering to him. It's the time in between that he faces the devil. If it were the devil referred to in that first verse, then the verse would be absurdly redundant: Then Jesus was led by the spirit of the devil...to be tempted by the devil.
10 posted on 02/26/2012 5:32:12 PM PST by aruanan
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To: Salvation
Mark's Gospel doesn't relate the three temptations, but rather talks about the "wild beasts". What/Who are the wild beasts in our lives?

Those typified by Obama, Reid, and Pelosi?
11 posted on 02/26/2012 5:37:12 PM PST by aruanan
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To: aruanan
Let's see

Obama — arrogance, pride, hypocrisy
Read — heresy of Mormonism
Pelosi — licentiousness, lying

12 posted on 02/26/2012 5:41:48 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation

oops
Reid — heresy of Mormonism


13 posted on 02/26/2012 5:42:41 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation
Haydock's Commentary

11 *And there came a voice from heaven: Thou art my beloved Son, in thee I am well pleased.

12 *And immediately the Spirit drove him out into the desert.

13 And he was in the desert forty days, and forty nights: and was tempted by Satan, and he was with beasts, and the Angels ministered to him.

14 *And after that John was delivered up, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God;

15 And saying: The time is accomplished, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent, and believe the gospel.

Mark 1

Ver. 12. Into the desert. For the description of this desert, &c. read Maundrel's Travels, or extracts therefrom in Rutter's Evangelical Harmony. Vol. i. p. 169.

Ver. 13. The Greek does not express the forty nights, but we find it in St. Matthew iv. 2.

Ver. 15. As if he were to say: To this day the Mosaic law has been in full force, but henceforth the evangelical law shall be preached; which law is not undeservedly compared to the kingdom of God.

(Theophylactus) --- Repent, therefore, says our Saviour, and believe the gospel; for if you believe not, you shall not understand; repent, therefore, and believe. What advantage is it to believe with good works? the merit of good works will not bring us to faith, but faith is the beginning of good works. (St. Jerome)

14 posted on 02/26/2012 6:07:32 PM PST by johngrace (I am a 1 John 4! Christian- declared at every Sunday Mass , Divine Mercy and Rosary prayers!)
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To: johngrace

http://haydock1859.tripod.com/id48.html


15 posted on 02/26/2012 6:08:14 PM PST by johngrace (I am a 1 John 4! Christian- declared at every Sunday Mass , Divine Mercy and Rosary prayers!)
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To: Salvation

That's For Sure!!

16 posted on 02/26/2012 6:21:04 PM PST by johngrace (I am a 1 John 4! Christian- declared at every Sunday Mass , Divine Mercy and Rosary prayers!)
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To: reefdiver; aruanan; johngrace

More on the Holy Spirit here.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2851467/posts?page=20#20


17 posted on 02/26/2012 6:37:57 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation
Jesus alone and weak out in the wilderness with wild beasts apparently didn't have any problem with them because He is also LORD of the beast. We do not know whether the beast simply left Him alone or rested next to Him keeping Him warm at night. In the New Kingdom the wolf and the lamb will lie down with each other. It is very possible that Jesus had a special relationship with the beast as He is their LORD. In many places in the Old Testament it is written about God's relationship with even the wild beast, how they cry out to Him when they are hungry, how He is there when they give birth, etc.

Isaaiah 11:6 The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them.

Isa 11:7 And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.

Isa 11:8 And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice' den.

Isa 11:9 They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.

Isa 11:10 And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious.

18 posted on 02/26/2012 7:18:52 PM PST by Bellflower (The LORD is Holy, separated from all sin, perfect, righteous, high and lifted up.)
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To: Bellflower

So are you saying that God the Father and God the Holy Spirit are not involved in our lives? It’s just Jesus, the second person of the Trinity?


19 posted on 02/26/2012 8:14:55 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Bellflower

You are quoting only from the Old Testament. Nothing from the New Testmanet. About God the Father, God the Holy Spirit?


20 posted on 02/26/2012 8:21:55 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation

Not quite sure where you are coming from with your question. I think you misread the way I used the word alone. I meant humanly speaking He was alone out in the wilderness to be tried by being tempted, which of course he past perfectly using Scripture. Not writing about Him being God alone. Not even beginning to write that.


21 posted on 02/26/2012 10:02:17 PM PST by Bellflower (The LORD is Holy, separated from all sin, perfect, righteous, high and lifted up.)
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To: Salvation

Very good sermon tying the temptation of Jesus with those the children of Israel faced and his victory through trust in God’s word, God’s will and God’s primacy in all.


22 posted on 02/26/2012 10:15:23 PM PST by boatbums (Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us. Titus 3:5)
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To: Salvation

Why is there an abundance of evidence for God in the universe, but none whatsoever for Satan until the human mind’s ability to abstract information from its environment?


23 posted on 02/29/2012 8:36:34 AM PST by onedoug
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