As I searched for an image for this post, I could find nothing but ugly, hideous, evil pictures of Satan tempting Jesus. I finally located this one, which I feel is probably more logical. Satan is hideous and the epitome of evil, but he often comes in sheep’s clothing – just like any other man. He may even appear as one very charismatic and charming.
In continuing my series on Mary’s journey, we go now to the desert, where after spending 40 days and 40 nights fasting and praying, Jesus human body was weakened and susceptible. It’s hard to imagine the Son of God ever showing signs of weakness, because of his divinity, but as a human being He went through some of the same things we do on a daily basis. Not only was He hungry, thirsty, tired, weak, but He must’ve felt lonely, vulnerable, fearful. Yet He is the Son of God. He could’ve caused food to come down from the heavens to feed His famished body, but He didn’t. This wasn’t God’s purpose. He had a plan laid out and Jesus was required to follow it to the letter.
This event shows how Jesus used God’s Word to protect Himself against the wiles of the devil. As you remember, Satan used scripture to tempt Jesus. See what I mean? This guy uses every trick in the book to create doubt in our minds. Jesus, even though at a low point, was able to retaliate with scripture as it was intended to be interpreted.
Mary wasn’t there for this event, but I imagine she heard about it later. As a mother, I know what it’s like to hear that their child has been placed in position of doubt. The only thing we can do is pray for them and their protection. Jesus wasn’t like any human child , but this temptation was all part of God’s greater mission for humanity.
The plan for our salvation meant God Himself would have to endure our sin, feel our pain, suffer with dignity and die on a cruel instrument of torture. It was the perfect payment and draws us back to Him in total thanksgiving and repentance.
He fought the devil in the desert and defeated Him with the Word. He fought the devil on the cross and carried every sin – past, present and future – to the grave and punched the devil in the gut. When He rose again on the third day, He laid Satan out with his power over death.
The devil is still alive though and we constantly need to be on guard. He comes in insidious ways so we have to protect ourselves from his arrows with the armor of God. Using God’s word is our sure defense – a gift from God. With that, the devil doesn’t have a chance.