Standing on Scripture
Devotional

Standing on Scripture

February 21, 2024

Standing on Scripture

“Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.” Hebrews 2:17-18

How do you react to tests? Most students would quickly say they don’t like tests. But as an adult how often do you even think about tests? We may not take multiple choice exams, but each of us is tested on a regular basis. In our career we face performance reviews or situations that test our ability to do our job. People or things can test our patience and kindness. We face a variety of tests, or temptations, almost every day. So, how do you respond to temptation?

Before beginning his ministry, Jesus spent 40 days in the wilderness. Matthew 4 reveals that Jesus was led there to be tested. He did not need to go through temptation for his own personal growth. Rather, as Hebrews 2:18 says, he did it to identify with us. Through Jesus we see what it looks like to stand firm when we face temptation. Matthew 4:1-11 lays out how Jesus reacted to three tests.

In the wilderness, Jesus fasted and experienced deep hunger, and the devil used his physical discomfort to tempt him. He suggested that Jesus use his divinity to bring himself bread. Although Jesus could have turned rock to bread, he didn’t because he relied on his Father to provide. We can’t miraculously produce food, but we do face tests when we are at a point of exhaustion. Think of a time when your physical or mental reserves were depleted and a difficult situation landed in your lap. How did you respond? Did you try to muster up your own strength to fix things, or did you rely on God to provide?

Next, Jesus was encouraged to trick his Father. But again Jesus stood strong. He refused to manipulate God and stood on the truth of Scripture. When have you tried to test God? We can have the tendency to repeatedly ask God for proof of his love and his power. Yet, God deserves our trust and belief. Our Lord doesn’t need to prove his love to us. He is our Creator and Savior. Jesus died for us so that we could have life, and as John 15:13 says, there is no greater example of love.

In the final temptation, Satan offered Jesus complete power without the pain of the cross. We can relate to wanting success and growth without suffering. Yet, God often has a different plan. A relationship with our Lord does not guarantee an end to pain. But it does mean our trials are not worthless. In every painful situation God is working even when we can’t see it.

With every temptation Jesus could have used his divinity, but instead, he fought each test as a human, relying on God the Father. In every response he quoted and stood on Scripture; the same Scripture we have today. God has equipped us to face temptation. We can stand secure in tests because we do not face them alone. God has given us the Holy Spirit to empower us, his word to strengthen us and his son to show us. So, when the tests come, we can boldly take a stand. As you experience temptation this week, remember Jesus and reflect on how you can firmly stand on Scripture.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, we thank you for Jesus who understands what it is like to be tested. We read of how Jesus used Scripture to stand against temptation and we are reminded that you have given us the same word. Help us to turn to your word and your truth when we face tests this week. We pray this in Jesus’ name amen.

Makalah Scholten
Spiritual Care Coordinator

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