Jesus was “full of the Holy Spirit” and immediately went forth into spiritual battle against the powers of darkness. We can learn much from His words spoken in response to the temptations of the devil.
Quoting from Deuteronomy 8:3, 6:13, and 6:16, the Messiah said: “Man shall not live by bread alone,” and “You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only shall you serve,” and finally “You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.” Our Redeemer’s choice of scriptural passages gives a mortal wound to the root of Satan’s evil design. God’s Word was more important to the Messiah than even His own bodily hunger. He was not impressed with any authority that contradicted His Father’s commandment. Our Savior was not enticed into a posture of unbelief, but trusted Jehovah through even the most extreme troubles.
An “opportune time” would eventually come for the public defeat of the devil. First on the cross (Colossians 2:15), and finally in the second coming of Christ (2 Thessalonians 1:10), all the armies of rebellion denying the Almighty will be utterly destroyed (Revelation 20:10-15).
As Jesus returned to Galilee, He faced the surprising hatred of His own neighbors. The people of Nazareth initially “spoke well of Him,” but soon the inquiry was heard, “Is not this Joseph’s son?” The “hometown” crowd eventually became violent when their unbelief was exposed. They “were filled with wrath” and sought to “throw Him down the cliff” on which the city was built.
Even in the healings of Jesus the armies of evil were arrayed against Him. They sought to destroy His ministry by revealing His identity before the appointed moment. He had another agenda: “I must preach the good news of the kingdom of God to the other towns as well; for I was sent for this purpose.”
Prayer from A Book of Prayers
Father, there is much danger all around us. The devil is seeking souls to devour. We will not worship him nor put You to the test. Be with us in power, for we are weak and in need. We can only live by faith in Jesus who was victorious over death. He proclaimed good news to the poor and delivered us from the clutches of destruction. Though many treated Your Son with disrespect in the days of His earthly ministry, He is alive forever, and has demonstrated His great love to us. We were far off from Your promises and from Your people, but we have been brought near through the blood of the Lamb. You have cast out of us the overwhelming weight of wickedness, and we have been renewed by Your grace. Show us the pathway of service. Make us agents of Your eternal Kingdom. Teach us how to have merciful hearts, words of life, and hands that help and heal.