Jesus in the Desert

As soon as Jesus was baptized by John, the Holy Spirit led Him out to the desert. Jesus had been baptized to set an example for us to follow. He was about to set another example of how we are to respond when we get tempted. Jesus stayed in the desert for forty days, and ate no food the whole time. He was tired, lonely, overheated and hungry.

At the end of forty days, the devil tried to tempt Jesus with how His body was feeling.

“If you are God’s Son,” he whispered, trying to cast doubt, “you can just turn these stones into bread.”

But Jesus knew He had not come to earth to use His power to serve Himself. He responded with God’s Word:

“People can’t just live on bread. They need every word of God, too.”

The second temptation the devil tried to use on Jesus was for power. He led Jesus to a high place where they looked out over all the nations of the earth. When Adam sinned, the world’s power had gone to Satan.

“Worship me and I will give you all the power of this world,” he said. “It has been given to me and I can give it to anyone who follows me.”

But again, Jesus would not be tempted and quoted the Bible back to him:

“The Scriptures say to worship and serve God alone!’”

The last temptation the devil tried was to temp Jesus with popularity. He led Him to the top of the temple in Jerusalem.

“Throw yourself off,” he urged. “If you are God’s Son, He will send His angels to catch You.”

Jesus certainly would have gotten a lot of applause by causing such a spectacle. But He hadn’t come to earth to gain attention with meaningless tricks. Just as before, Jesus used God’s Word to refuse Satan:

“The Scriptures say not to test God,” He reminded him.

After this final defeat, the devil left Jesus. Back in the desert again, God the Father sent angels to bring His Son all that He could need.

The devil tried to tempt Jesus with physical comfort, power and applause. But Jesus resisted. He set an example for how we can save God’s promises in our hearts to remember whenever we are tempted to choose what the world has to offer us in place of God.