Wearing His Faith
Watch out there are deadly missiles headed your way!
Above the softness of our blue green planet there are hostile forces poised. They range across space lurking and flying about at their master's bidding. They are former angels. They are Satan the Dragon's army. They are deadly, vile, malignant and very intelligent. In fact, the word demon in Greek means "intelligence".
These aliens to our planet are highly skilled, incredibly powerful, usually invisible - warriors. They can hear us talk, they can pass through walls, they can fly through space, they inhabit human and animal bodies, they alter human behavior, they afflict humans with disease, anguish and turmoil.
These extra-terrestrial beings can take on various forms looking human, looking powerful, looking fearsome. They are watching over the realm of the serpent and his seed. You see, we saints of God are at war this morning. There is a conflict going on the likes of which most of us haven't fully comprehended. Swirling around us the unseen beings of the spirit world are locked in mortal combat. Behind the scenes in every boardroom, political planning session, military strategy session, classroom, worship service and everywhere else, these unseen spirits watch, listen and whisper their lies. It is the battle for the Earth that rages. The god of this world has dispatched his demon warriors with one target, blind the minds of earth's inhabitants until they can't see and won't follow - God!
What are their arrows? They shoot to deaden our senses, enflame our desires, deceive our minds, short circuit our consciences and deafen our ears to God's Word!
First, The ultimate shield of faith was modeled by Jesus
Does it work? Well let's go to see One who knew just how to use it and see Him win!
In Matthew 4:1-11 we read about Jesus deflecting each of Satan's flaming missiles!!
Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.2 And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, afterward He was hungry.3 Now when the tempter came to Him, he said, "If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread."4 But He answered and said, " It is written , 'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.' "5 Then the devil took Him up into the holy city, set Him on the pinnacle of the temple,6 and said to Him, "If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down. For it is written: 'He shall give His angels charge over you,' and, 'In their hands they shall bear you up, Lest you dash your foot against a stone.' " 7 Jesus said to him, "It is written again, 'You shall not tempt the Lord your God.' "8 Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory.9 And he said to Him, "All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me."10 Then Jesus said to him, "Away with you, Satan! For it is written , 'You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.' "11 Then the devil left Him, and behold, angels came and ministered to Him.
A brief lesson on Christ's temptation
The SETTING was bad:
- Wilderness: Matthew and Luke 4 and Mark 1
- WITH WILD BEASTS Mark 1:13 And He was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan, and was with the wild beasts; and the angels ministered to Him.
- 40 Days without food Mt 4;Lk 4
The OUTCOME was good. How unlike the 1st Adam is this last Adam.
- The Devil challenged the first man. The Last Man challenged the Devil.
- The Devil ruined the first Adam. The Last Adam spoiled the Devil.
- The First Adam involved the Race in his defeat. The Last Adam included the Race in His victory.
- The First Adam stood as the head of the race and falling, dragged the race down with him. The Last Adam stood as the Head of the new race, and being victorious, lifted that race with Him.
The AGENT was evil.
- Satan the Adversary, Devil and slanderer
- Lucifer fallen, the father of sin, lies, murder, death and hell.
- The very powerful King of Darkness.
The RECORD is Christ's personal Account.
It is so special because only He was there. The fact that we have it speaks to His personal desire that we have it to help us as we face the same adversary. May we likewise conquer in His power!
The Target of Satan's missiles was TEMPTATION.
In the Gospels we have Satan tempting Christ. The 40 days were filled with a spiritual struggle. The climax of Satan's attack is given in Matthew and Luke 4. In Matthew 4 we have the chronological order.
TEMPTATION # 1
Physical Attack: APPETITE = The Desire to Enjoy
( Mt. 4:2-4; Lk. 4:2-4; I John 2:16 'lust flesh')
In the Bread into stones temptation Satan attacks Christ at the point of submission to the will of God. Would Christ submit and obey the Father at all costs or not.
This attack was the temptation to satisfy a legitimate desire by illegitimate means. This is the whole realm of sensual things, drugs, alcohol. Trying to get what only God can give. Filling that God shaped vacuum in our lives with pleasure over worship.
THE ANSWER: Deuteronomy 8:3 "So He humbled you, allowed you to hunger, and fed you with manna which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you know that man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the Lord.
THE TEMPTATION # 2
Mental Attack: AMBITION = The Desire to Achieve
Mt. 4:5-6; Lk. 4:9-11; I John 2:16 'pride of life'
In the jump temptation the Devil was attacking Christ and His reliance upon God and His timing. Stunts, dazzling displays and presumption are all contrary to God's plan.
This attack was, according to J. Oswald Sanders, the temptation to produce spiritual results in an unspiritual way. This is the whole realm of rivalry, externalism, pride, haughtiness and self-reliance.
- THE ANSWER: Deuteronomy 6:16 "You shall not tempt the Lord your God as you tempted Him in Massah.
To Continue this message with the third temptation of Christ and an explanation of the shield of faith please copy and paste this URL into your browser bar: http://www.discoverthebook.org/sermons_read.asp?id=5
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