Matthew 4:1-11 (NLT)
1 Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted there by the devil. 2 For forty days and forty nights he fasted and became very hungry. 3 During that time the devil came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become loaves of bread.” 4 But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say, ‘People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” 5 Then the devil took him to the holy city, Jerusalem, to the highest point of the Temple, 6 and said, “If you are the Son of God, jump off! For the Scriptures say, ‘He will order his angels to protect you. And they will hold you up with their hands so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.’” 7 Jesus responded, “The Scriptures also say, ‘You must not test the Lord your God.’” 8 Next the devil took him to the peak of a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. 9 “I will give it all to you,” he said, “if you will kneel down and worship me.” 10 “Get out of here, Satan,” Jesus told him. “For the Scriptures say, You must worship the Lord your God and serve only him.’” 11 Then the devil went away, and angels came and took care of Jesus.
This is the account of the temptation of Jesus. During a time of fasting Satan came to Jesus. His first offer was to satisfy his hunger. The second time Satan tempted Jesus by saying if you will jump from this highest point, God will send angels to protect you. And the third time Satan offered something not even his; he offered Jesus the world.
Jesus said, “What sorrow awaits the world, because it tempts people to sin. Temptations are inevitable, but what sorrow awaits the person who does the tempting.” Temptations are something each of us will experience. James tells us temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away. As Jesus taught the disciples to pray he said, “Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us. And don’t let us yield to temptation.” Paul said, “The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more that you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so you can endure.” Temptation is not sin. There are many people who probably think when they are tempted by the thought of power, by the thought of fulfilling desires, or any other self serving thought they have sinned. But Jesus was tempted and did not sin. Jesus had to think about his hunger and the bread being offered Him, but he refused to use His power to meet His own need. In his weakness He undoubtedly thought about how the angels could minister to Him, but he waited on God to send them. James also tells us “God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life God has promised to those who love Him.” Pray you might be able to pass by the temptations of the world. But also pray when you do face temptations that God will see you through. Pray you would find strength in knowing you did not give into temptation and did not consider it to be a sin.