by Philip Layton
Jesus resists the devil’s temptations and begins his ministry
- Is the devil real?
- When he returns to Nazareth, Jesus faces a lack of belief in his authority. Why do you think this was?
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Going Deeper – from 'Words of Life'
We live in a world that puts a price on just about anything. Childless couples can hire surrogate mothers from various countries at a very low price to have children for them. A certain fee might buy someone the right to immigrate to a country of their choice. Even in prison, money speaks. There are also opportunities to acquire money – that isn’t ours! When an ‘opportunity’ arises, sometimes the temptation is overwhelming.
Money isn’t the only temptation out there. Many people are tempted to toy with relationships that are totally inappropriate. Once we cross the line there’s no turning back. We’re affected, the other person is affected, and many others are therefore affected. Hurt, even to the point of devastation.
Temptations surround us. And the devil longs to pull us down, just as he tried to pull Jesus down. Yet Jesus was filled with the Holy Spirit.
After this time of temptation, Jesus returned to Nazareth. He went to the synagogue, stood and read from the scroll of Isaiah:
‘The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour’ (vv 18, 19).
He then told the listeners that the Scripture, today, was now fulfilled.
These verses tell us that when we yield to temptation, we are living for self-gratification and even self-glorification. Rather than falling for Satan’s tactics, leading to destruction, we are to focus on glorifying God – today, and all days – as we’re filled with the Holy Spirit. We are to realise that we, too, are anointed to preach the good news, to proclaim freedom, to bring recovery of sight, to release the oppressed.
We all have a mission. If we focus on it alone, then all glory will be given to God. This is what life in the Spirit is all about!
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