Luke 4:1-13
The Defeat of Temptation

There is something about a fight that most men and even some women love.  That is
obvious by the popularity of sports.  What is a football or baseball game?  In
it is essence, it is a fight between two teams.  But it is not just teams that
people enjoy watching fight it out.  It can also be individual men.  From the
gladiators of old to the Smack Down arenas of today, people are interested in
watching a good fight.

This text contains the fight of fights.  It is a fight between the King of
Darkness and the King of kings, between evil and good, between darkness and
light.  This fight, however, has some interesting consequences.

As we begin thinking about the text, consider some things:
    1. The significance of this fight.  While it centers on Jesusí temptation,
        this fight is about much more than just one Manís victory or defeat.
        This battle will determine whether there is any hope for salvation.
    2. The help this fight can offer.  We are getting a close up, slow motion
        look at how Satan attacked Jesus and how Jesus defended against those
        attacks.  The benefit of seeing this kind of match up would be priceless
        to anyone who wants to be victorious in their Christian life,.

    I. This is a re-match of a battle fought 4,000 years ago.
        A. The original took place between Adam and Satan.
            1. Adam is some times referred to as the First Adam.

1Cor 15:45  And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soulÖ.

                a. He has that title because Adam represented all of humanity.
                b. That is, what Adam did not just effect him.  It effected us
                    all.
            2. As our first representative, Adam was pure but untried.
                a. Typically, I refer to that as innocent.
                b. You canít call what Adam was perfect because if he had truly
                    been perfect, he would not have been able to fail.
                c. However, when tempted, Adam did fall.
                d. His fall has had eternal consequences.

Romans 5:17 For if by one manís offence death reignedÖ.

                e. Because Adam fell, we are all sentenced to death and hell.

        B. However, God in His mercy gave us another Adam, and by doing so,
            demanded another match.

1Cor 15:45  And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the
last Adam was made a quickening spirit.

            1. Jesus is the Last Adam.
                a. You might be tempted to call Jesus the Second Adam, but do not
                    do so.
                b. To have a first and second would imply there could be a third
                    and fourth.
                c. There wonít be.  Mankind has used up our allotted number of
                    times to battle Satan.
            2. The Last Adam was like the first Adam in many ways.
                a. He also represented the entire human race.
                    (1) Whatever Jesus loses will cost the whole human race.
                    (2) However, whatever Jesus gains will be made available to
                        the whole human race.
                b. Jesus was pure, sinless.
                c. And Jesus had to be tried.
                    (1) So this battle is re-match.
                    (2) Jesus is facing temptation for us.
                    (3) His goal is to win back what the first Adam lost.

         C. What we are seeing here is not the whole battle.
            1. The whole life of Jesus was the battle.
            2. What we are seeing here is a close up of just one round.
            3. However, this is a good opportunity to see how the Last Adam dealt
                with and defeated Satan throughout His earthly life.
            4. If Jesus is tempted and fails, man has no hope.
                a. Jesus is not a second Adam but the LAST Adam.
                b. There is no other.
                c. If Jesus fails, mankind would be lost.

   II. Lessons to help in our temptation battles.
        A. Each temptation struck hard against a desire of Jesus.
            1. Temptation and His Desires
                a. \\#Luke 4:2-3\\ Jesus was hungry.
                    (1) Jesus had been 40 days and nights without eating anything.
                    (2) The Bible mentions Jesusí hunger as if it were just a
                         fact.
                    (3) If you are the one who is hunger it is more than just a
                         fact!
                b. \\#Luke 4:5-7\\ Jesus did want the kingdoms which Satan
                    possessed.
                    (1) Satan had taken those kingdoms from Adam.
                    (2) Jesus came to get them back.
                c. \\#Luke 4:9-11\\ Jesus did want to prove that He was God.
                    (1) We do not think of Jesus as having desires, but He is in
                         a human body.
                    (2) Regardless, even God has desires.  (He desires us to be
                         saved, to do what is right, to worship Him.)
                    (3) Jesus wanted the people to know He is God.
            2. Lessons:
                a. A temptation is not temptation unless it hits upon a desire.
                    (1) Christians sometimes allow themselves to sin and say,
                         "But that is something Iíve always wanted" or
                         "I really needed that."
                    (2) That is Satanís whole point!  Why tempt you with some-
                         thing you donít want or need!
                b. Satan has no scruples.
                    (1) Satan is the kind of fellow who will tempt a starving
                         man with food, a thirsty man with water, a dying man
                         with life.
                    (2) If you underestimate the extents Satan will go to get
                         at you, you will be defeated before you get started.
                c. Satan will customize a temptation for whatever situation you
                    are in.
                    (1) What a deep bag of tricks this rascal has!
                    (2) Here is a starving man and Satan tempts Him to turn
                         stones into bread;
                        here is the Son of God and Satan tempts Him to force
                         God into a rescue.
                    (3) Satan is great at customizing his attacks to whatever
                         situation you are in.
                         (a) So your wife is out of town and, suddenly, you meet
                              a gorgeous lady?
                         (b) So you are out of work and guess what kind of job
                              just came open?
                         (c) So you wanted to take a trip and so and so just
                              asked you to go with him?
                    (4) Christian, wake up and smell the coffee!  You are being
                         played like an old violin.

        B. Not everything Jesus was tempted to do was bad.
            1. There was nothing wrong with turning stones to bread.
            2. The wrong in this temptation was not WHAT Satan wanted Jesus to do
                but what Jesusí actions would have MEANT.
                a. If Jesus used supernatural power to deal with natural problems,
                    it would mean that He was not "tested in all points like as
                    we are."
                b. You and I donít have the power to turn stones into bread,
                    leaves into dollars, broken down heaps into running
                    automobiles.
                c. If Jesus is going to fight FOR the common man, He is going to
                    have to be LIKE the common man.
            3. This should broaden our definition of what a temptation.
                a. Temptations are not always good verses bad and wrong verses
                    right.
                b. Sometimes a temptation can be about Godís way verses manís
                    way, best verses good, faith verses works, testimony verses
                    convenience.
            4. Lesson:
                a. Believe it or not, we might have to think spiritually in order
                    to comprehend what the real temptation is about!
                b. We need all the prayer and Bible truth we can get to discern
                    what Satanís motives really are.
                    (1) In my younger days, I liked to play chess.
                    (2) I bought a computerized chess board and played against it.
                    (3) Although I was not very good, I remember the thrill of
                         looking ahead to see an attack that was being set up for
                         me.
                    (4) And I remember the frustration of stepping into a trap
                         without ever seeing it coming.

        C. Power alone is not a cure-all in temptation.
            1. People like to imagine how perfect things would be if something
                were different.
                a. If God would just answer their prayers.
                b. If they made more money.
                c. If they looked a certain way.
            2. Jesus had all power butÖ
                a. Having the power to turn stones to bread didnít cure His
                    hunger.
                b. Being offered a easy kingdom did not by-pass the painful
                    cross He would have to hang upon.
                c. Having angels at His side did not give Him an easy way to
                    prove who He was.
            3. Jesus was filled with the Holy Spirit \\#1\\ but He still had to
                face temptation.
            4. Lesson:
                a. Donít look for temptations to get easier as you grow stronger.
                    (1) Easier is really not what the Christian life is about.
                    (2) The stronger we are in Christ, the more difficult the
                         tasks are that Christ asks us to bear and the fewer the
                         people are who are willing to bear them.
                b. Being stronger may mean that we overcome our first temptations,
                 but there are always harder temptations out there to tackle.

        D. \\#Luke 4:4, 8, 12\\ Jesus defeated Satanís temptations with
            Scripture.
            1. If you get what I said about the stones and bread, you understand
                that Jesus was not just trying to withstand Satan, He was with-
                standing Satan using only the resources which are available to us.
                a. Jesus had the Holy Spirit.
                b. Jesus had the Scriptures.
                c. Those are the same resources which are available to us.
                d. The same victorious outcome which Jesus experienced, we can
                    experience.
            2. It may sound over-simplified, but being spiritually strong is not
                about learning secrets.  It is about using what God has made
                available to us.
                a. The same tools which I preach to the new convert are the tools
                    which will make a strong Christian.
                    1. Read, study, memorize the Word of God.
                    2. Practice praying.
                    3. Be faithful to attend and to serve in a Bible-believing,
                        Bible preaching, sin-hating, God-fearing church.
                        (a) I read this morning where some big evangelical church
                             has decided to preach that gays are a part of Godís
                             design for the church.
                        (b) Isnít it strange how the news picks the one church in
                             a thousand that is caving into the world to
                             publicize it?
                        (c) Going to a church that isnít going to preach the truth
                             isnít going to help you.
                b. Stronger Christians donít have more tools at their disposal.
                    1. They have the same Holy Ghost, the same Bible, the same
                        access by prayer, the same Christian fellowship as every-
                        one else.
                    2. The difference is they have learned how important those
                        resources are and take full advantage of them!

This text does not contain the fight of the century, but the fight of history.
Because the Last Adam went the full ten rounds without succumbing to Satan, He
was able to take back all that the First Adam had lost.  Jesus had no secret
moves.  The account is given so that we can clearly see how He won the fight.

Now it is time for us to go and do likewise.

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