If thou be the Son of God

And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread. (Matthew 4:3, KJV)

Have you been tempted recently? Consider what enticed you.  In Matthew 4:3, Satan, identified as the Tempter, poses a significant threat, much like he did to Jesus. This passage offers insights into recognizing and overcoming temptations inspired by Jesus’ responses.

Picture Jesus, who, after a 40-day fast, faced hunger—a human vulnerability Satan sought to exploit. The Tempter challenged Jesus: “If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.” The crux of this temptation lies in the word “if,” casting doubt on God’s declaration about Jesus as His Son (Matthew 3:17, KJV). This mirrors Satan’s tactic in Eden, where he prompted Eve to question God’s command (Genesis 3:1-2).

Satan’s method is deceptively straightforward: he sows doubt about God’s word, leading to sinful actions. He desired Jesus to question His divine sonship and prove it wrongly. Although Jesus had the power to transform stones into bread, as He later turned water into wine and multiplied loaves, doing so to validate His identity would have been sinful.

Whereas the first Adam fell to temptation, Jesus, the last Adam, triumphed. Reflect now: Are you, like the first Adam, doubting God’s promises—about healing, provision, protection, or moral truths—and acting out of this doubt? For instance, Satan is saying to millions today, “Has God really said sexual relationship outside of marriage is sin?”

Satan has not changed his temptation strategy—why should he when it works so well almost every time on most people? But Jesus changed the rules of his game. The Spirit is now here to empower us to triumph every time. Recognize and resist these temptations. Do not let doubt about God’s Word take root in your heart.

Meditate

Reflect on why Matthew 4:3 specifically names Satan as the Tempter and its implications for your spiritual life.

Apply the Word

View temptations as they truly are: attacks from Satan against your faith in God. Stand firm against them, and do not succumb to his deceptions.

Pray

Pray for the Holy Spirit’s strength to resist temptation, asking for discernment and steadfastness in your faith journey.

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