Reading Passage: Matthew 4:1-11
Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil. Matt 4:1 NIV
This is a bit confusing. The Spirit leads Jesus to be tempted by the Devil! Why does the Spirit do so? God never tempts us. “When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me, for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He tempt anyone” James 1:13 NIV. Sometimes, however, He leads us to be tempted.
We all fear temptations. But remember, temptations are an opportunity to prove our integrity. It is just like a class exam. If there is no exam, how can we prove the competence of a student?
“That’s Okay” you may say, “But the sad thing is, Satan is the examiner! Why is it not an angel?” It is because Satan is the accuser of the saints, not the angels. In the case of Job, the blameless and righteous, he said; “Does Job fear God for nothing? Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has?” Job 1:9-10 NIV. When Satan puts a challenge like that, God sends us for an exam, which is conducted by Satan! He says, “Go, my son! Undertake the challenge! Prove your faithfulness!”
Some times people ask, why did God make the tree of knowledge that, which He knew, would induce Man? If God had not been allowing temptations, He would be like a father who does not send his child for class exams, fearing that the child would fail. Why didn’t God intervene when Eve was failing? If He did so, He would have been like a father who writes the exams in place of his child!
It is God, who put Joseph in Potiphar’s house. God even allowed Potiphar’s wife, to have Joseph’s mantle. But Joseph came out victoriously from Satan’s persuasion. He proved his purity and integrity. God wants us to go through temptations and come out victorious. Only then, He can proudly say, “Yea, my child’s purity is proven. Now, No one can accuse him.”
Prayer: Lord, I know, you never tempt me to sin. But, when you allow me to undergo temptations, help me to come out victoriously. I am weak, but thou art strong! Give me strength, AMEN
Further passage: Gen 39.1- 23; James 1. 12-15