Journey with Jesus Lent Devotional Week 3
Week 2 ┃ Sheila Sekela
Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve Him only.’” Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.” Matthew 4:10-11
Sometimes I wonder what on earth Satan was thinking in the third temptation, to try to get Jesus to worship him. Did he not know that Jesus was God made flesh? I guess he didn’t, or he wouldn’t have been so blatant in his attempt to subvert Christ. Jesus recognized who His tempter was, though. He had been led into the wilderness to be tested, and I think He fasted those 40 days and nights in preparation. He may have been physically weak from hunger, but He was very strong in His spirit!
Satan is far more successful in tempting us, though, isn’t he? I know he is with me. I’m so distractable it is sometimes very easy for him to tempt me down a path that looks harmless, only to discover I’ve fallen into one of his traps. And, I’ll confess, sometimes Satan doesn’t have to trick me; I jump right into sin with both feet. He knows what my weaknesses are and exploits them very effectively, I’m sad to say.
That’s the reason I am grateful for this season of preparation for Resurrection Sunday, with its emphasis on fasting and praying. It is a time to refocus on the God we serve, His holiness, and how worthy He is of our worship and fealty. For me, knowing others are also fasting makes it almost a joyful thing. It is a holy endeavor to corporately prepare our hearts to celebrate our risen King.
Let’s be prepared for Satan to try to derail us from that effort, though, just as he tried to derail Christ. He may be sneaky, as he was in Christ’s first two temptations, or he may just blatantly offer us the world if we turn our backs on the Lord. But he will come at us, of that we can be sure.
Just like Jesus, though, we can command Satan to leave us. Satan was defeated at the cross, and any power he has is only that we give him. If we resist him, he will flee. (James 4:7) And perhaps angels will then attend us, just as it says in verse 11 that they attended Christ after He sent Satan packing. I find that a comforting thought, don’t you?