In the Gospel Of Matthew, we learn of the 40 day fast and temptations of Jesus Christ. Were you aware of the spiritual significance behind these verses and how they apply to us? Let’s begin with Chapter 4:1. “Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred. And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread. But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.”
We will begin with the foundation, the only One, the Chief Cornerstone. The Messiah came preaching, “He is the way, the truth and the life. And no man comes to the Father but by Him.” The first word that we can gain an understanding of is “life.” While Jesus was being tempted by the devil, He was told to turn the stones into bread. We learn in 1 Peter 2, “Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ. Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded.” Here, we have gained the understanding that our bodies represent living stones. Let us now apply it, with simplicity, to the first temptation of Christ during His 40 day fast.
We, as a believer in Jesus Christ, aren’t able to gain eternal life without knowing and understanding the Word. It’s not possible to base all of our faith in a single verse. We need every word of the LORD God to live. Otherwise, we fall short in our understanding. One verse can be misinterpreted and, without reading our Bibles and comparing what we see with other teachings, we cannot understand what is being said. We cannot understand the Epistles without knowing what Jesus was telling us. As living stones, being built up, Christ is the cornerstone of our faith. Everything needs to be built off of His Words.
During His 40 day fast, Christ is once again tempted by Satan. “Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me. Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.” We are told in Deuteronomy 6, “Thou shalt fear the LORD thy God, and serve him, and shalt swear by his name. Ye shall not go after other gods, of the gods of the people which are round about you; (For the LORD thy God is a jealous God among you) lest the anger of the LORD thy God be kindled against thee, and destroy thee from off the face of the earth.”
What if we have all already done this? Why did Jesus tell us our father here is the devil? Why did he call Peter Satan in Matthew 16:22-24? What if, just by being here, we are worshipping Satan? Have you looked around you or looked at the world today? Nearly everyone is focused on self, other than the LORD God. Also, during the time of His temptation, the Bible says, “Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple, And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone. Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.”
We will now look at the original in Deuteronomy, “Ye shall not tempt the LORD your God, as ye tempted him in Massah. Ye shall diligently keep the commandments of the LORD your God, and his testimonies, and his statutes, which he hath commanded thee. And thou shalt do that which is right and good in the sight of the LORD: that it may be well with thee, and that thou mayest go in and possess the good land which the LORD swore unto thy fathers, To cast out all thine enemies from before thee, as the LORD hath spoken.”
Jesus tells us He is the way, the truth, and the life. What we just looked at were these biblical principles in reverse. The life comes by knowing and understanding the Word. The truth is who we are, what we are guilty of, repentance, and conversion. To understand the way is to keep the commandments of the LORD God, and to walk in all His ways. What is the way? This is the way, walk in it.
Jonathan Heller – Lift Up A Banner