Matthew_4

Scripture
 
Matthew‬ ‭4:1-4‬ ‭NIV
 
Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”” “Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.” Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ ””
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‬‬Observation-What does it say?
 
Immediately after being baptized by John, and receiving the Spirit, with a Voice from Heaven saying, this is my Son whom I am well pleased, (see Matt. 3), Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to fast and be tempted by Satan. Following that wilderness experience, He was attended by angels and began His ministry.

Understanding-What does it mean?

The ultimate test of complete surrender to God occurs when we are in the wilderness.

Jesus was put to the ultimate test of complete surrender to God during His experience in the wilderness for 40 days and 40 nights. God had to break Jesus down, make Him dependent on Him alone, and test Him before He was able to start His ministry. 
Although Jesus was and is God, He was still in a human form and all the needs of a human being (like food) had to be stripped from Him as well as His desires as a human being too (such as being given all the kingdoms of the world-success in life!). Physically, spiritually, mentally and emotionally (heart, soul, mind and strength) had to be dependent on God before He could fulfill His calling. The calling God had for His life was to be betrayed, beaten, mocked, regarded with low esteem and to die a criminal’s death as an innocent man. 

“He was despised and rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain. Like one from whom people hide their faces he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.”
‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭53:3‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Life Application

In order to find ourselves, we must lose ourselves (Matthew 10:39) and fix our eyes on Jesus.

We just went through 28 days of prayer and fasting last month, and those who participated understand the feeling of being dependent on the Spirit alone, not on social media, TV, video games, or food. On a personal level, going down to 3 days of water only was the most difficult for me, not so much because of my desire to eat, but because of the physiological effects on my body without food. The worse day was Sunday morning, with 4 hours left to go before the fast officially ended. I felt weak and dizzy, my heart was beating fast and I would start gagging with nothing coming out. I was calling out to the Lord because I was so tempted to break the fast, but had my husband pray for me. I started sweating and felt better, but then it happened again on our way to church and I still had to be able serve on stage for worship! I called out to the Lord in my physical weakness and at that point, the Holy Spirit told me to take my eyes off of what’s happening around me. Take my eyes off of what my body is feeling and put it on Him. Suddenly, I felt better.

 
It taught me a lesson about how whenever I feel like breaking or giving up in marriage, life, my calling in ministry, etc. and do it the world’s way, to take my eyes off of myself and put it back on Him because He is all I need. The calling of a servant requires Him to break us of ourselves first. Are we willing to be broken by and for Him in order to be filled by Him alone?

Dear Jesus, I pray that the struggles of the flesh would disappear as we continue to keep our focus on You. I pray that we wouldn’t be overcome by the temptations of the enemy and what the world has to offer as we cleanse our minds with Your Word daily. In Your Name we pray, Amen.


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Michelle Gaddi