Be alert and pray, and watch out for the enemy’s trap

Mathew 26:41, 41 “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

Mathew 4, Luke 4 , In both these chapter we read Jesus was filled with the Holy Spirit, and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness. The Son of God fasted for forty days. In Luke 3 we read that Jesus was baptized and the Holy Spirit came down upon Him like a dove and was in Him. And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.”

After the Heavenly Father proclaimed that this is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased, the Devil tested Jesus in the wilderness. The devil was silent for the thirty years that Jesus was silent. the devil does not pay attention to a person till the time the person lives entrapped in the dreams and desires of the material world. The devil becomes active and we come under his scanner when we come closer to God and the Father call us as His Son/daughter.

In the OT the first question that was asked was by the serpent to Eve, Genesis 3:1,Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?” This question was just the beginning. Today he asks numerous questions to each one of us. Eve doubted the creator, Heavenly Father, and believed the enemy, the devil. She fell into the snares of the crafty devil. A small disobedience in the form of a fruit became the curse for whole humankind. Some sins seem trivial to us. Dear children of God, one drop of poison is enough to send a person to the land of dead. Be it a drop or a full bottle, poison does its work. Our enemy tested the Lord also.

First test: There is no need to delve into details about the experience in the wilderness. The devil tested Jesus through tempting hunger. After fasting for 40 days, Jesus was very hungry. Not letting go of the golden opportunity, devil came to test Jesus in His hunger. Luke 4:3, The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.” The Lord need only say a word that the heavenly food would have been sent down from heaven. Our Heavenly Father is the one who fed His children with manna in the wilderness. He sent food to Elijah through a crow. Even though Jesus is the Son of God, He fasted for 40 long days and nights like a normal human. He was tired and exhausted out of hunger. The Lord defeated him by words of God Himself, Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone.’ Today a lot of people fall into this trap. After breaking a fast, most people pollute themselves by eating whatever comes in sight. If we become ready to sacrifice a little for redemption of our souls, then we can achieve salvation for our souls. Our soul is eternal. Body needs food, in the same way the soul needs the word of God. Let us all make it our mantra for living.

Second Test: Luke 4:5-6, The devil led him up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. And he said to him, “I will give you all their authority and splendor; it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. If you worship me, it will all be yours.” When the devil saw that Jesus was falling for the trap of hunger, he tries to tempt Him through the riches of the world. Here too, Jesus defeats him by the word of God, Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve him only. Just think if we were in place of Jesus, what would have we done??? After looking around and seeing that no one is around, would you have worshipped him??? And if you find someone looking would you have tempted them too to join is worshipping the devil?? Or, instead of falling into the traps of a hunter would you be careful and alert and rescue yourself like a bird??

Third test:The devil led him to Jerusalem and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down from here. 10 For it is written:

“‘He will command his angels concerning you
    to guard you carefully;
11 they will lift you up in their hands,
    so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’”

Dear children of God, the devil knows the Bible better than all of us. He presented a challenge before the Savior. If he won he could have made Jesus retrace His steps from His duty on earth. By having Jesus do the wonder he was trying to do away the suffering and crucifixion of Jesus for the sins of the world. The devil knew it very well that salvation for the world was possible only by the sacrifice of the blood of the Lord. It was an unbearable thought for him that the children whom he had distanced/separated from the Father would once again be close to Him. The answer to his temptation was, 12 Jesus answered, “It is said: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’” The sword of the word of God helped Jesus defeat the devil in his plans. He left Jesus.

Dear children of God, just think if the devil had the guts to tempt the Son of God, would he spare us feeble humans??? He is around us always, hence be alert and careful. He presents before us the pleasures of this material world to tempt us. Man has many forms of hunger. Once those are satisfied, then man seeks power & authority. After achieving that, man is ready to even test the Lord Himself. There are many around the world today who having fallen into the quicksand of sins, find it difficult to come out. In this there is discrimination of the weak or mighty, rich or poor, etc.

Romans 6:12-13, 12 Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. 13 Do not offer any part of yourself to sin as an instrument of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness.

James 4:7-8, Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.

James 1:13-18, 13 When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14 but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. 15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.

16 Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers and sisters. 17 Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. 18 He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of first fruits of all he created.

Psalm 91:11, For he will command his angels concerning you
    to guard you in all your ways;

Believe in this promise always and move ahead. He did not promise that He will be with us if we go astray.

1 Corinthians 10:12, 12 So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!

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