Jesus, being filled with the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, being tempted by the devil for forty days. During those days He ate nothing. And when they were ended, He was hungry. The devil said to Him, "If You are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread." Jesus answered him, "It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God'" (Luke 4:1-4).
Let's look at the first weapon Jesus used when He was tempted by the enemy.
The story of Jesus' temptation begins in Luke 4:1–2, "Jesus, being filled with the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, being tempted by the devil for forty days. During those days He ate nothing. And when they were ended, He was hungry."
Unlike God, Satan is not omnipresent. He cannot be in more than one place at a time. Satan himself went to war with Jesus, but for the rest of us, he sends someone else on his behalf. As is often the case with the demonic, no one invites it, but instead, it rudely shows up in a pushy and bossy way, demanding to be dealt with immediately.
Like Moses (Ex. 34:28) and Elijah (1 Kings 19:8), Jesus spent 40 days alone in the wilderness. By the time the dragon showed up for war, Jesus had reached the limits of His humanity. In this we learn when our enemy is likely to HIT—when we are hungry, isolated and tired.
Living out of His full humanity, the Lord Jesus was vulnerable. We are as well, anytime we find ourselves hungry, isolated or tired. To make matters worse, Satan and demons do not share the limitations of our humanity. They do not get the flu, need a day off or age. Our humanity has limits that spirit beings do not share.
How can you as a human being with finite energy possibly win a battle against spirit beings who have the benefit of being able to war against you day and night without needing a meal, nap, glass of water or day off? Your power is finite, but the Spirit's power is infinite!
Where did Jesus' temptation occur? In a barren, lonely, desolate wilderness. Sometimes following the leading of the Holy Spirit means we, like Jesus, will find ourselves in poverty rather than prosperity, trouble instead of tranquility and hardship instead of happiness. It just goes to show that the surest place to be is in God's will, even if it's in a wilderness. It is better to have the Spirit and nothing else than to have everything but the Spirit.
Mark Driscoll is a Jesus-following, mission-leading, church-serving, people-loving, Bible-preaching pastor and the author of many books, including Spirit-Filled Jesus, which you can order here. He currently pastors The Trinity Church in Scottsdale, Arizona, with his family. For all of pastor Mark Driscoll's Bible teaching, please visit markdriscoll.orgor download the app. You can download a free devotional e-book from pastor Mark here.
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