Bible Pathways Daily Bible Reading Devotional

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Bible Pathways - Oct. 2, 2006

Matthew 4

In Today's Scripture Reading:

Temptation by Satan; Sermon on the Mount; the Beatitudes; believers likened to salt and light; Jesus' teaching on the Law, divorce, oaths, giving, fasting

Following His baptism in the Jordan River, Jesus was led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the Devil (Matthew 4:1). First, the Devil suggested an easy, self-serving way in which Jesus might satisfy His hunger (appealing to the lust of the flesh). But Jesus, knowing that submission to the will of God must be the basis for all decisions, quoted Scripture saying: It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every Word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God (4:4; Deuteronomy 8:3). The word tempt carries the thought of "try or prove." Such testing is a necessary part of our lives for it reveals our true character. When He had fasted forty days and forty nights, He was afterward an hungred. And when the tempter came to Him, he said, If (Since) Thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread (Matthew 4:2-3). The abilities God has bestowed upon us are meant to be used for His honor and glory.

Satan's second temptation came in the Holy City . . . on a pinnacle of the Temple (4:5). Satan suggested that Jesus should leap down into the midst of the people and present Himself as a superhuman Messiah (appealing to the pride of life). Satan quoted Scripture to support this temptation, saying: He shall give His angels charge concerning Thee. . . lest at any time Thou dash Thy foot against a stone (4:6; Psalm 91:11-12). The Devil frequently appears religious by quoting Scripture, but only the portions which fit his scheme. Jesus responded: Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God (Matthew 4:7).

In Satan's final attempt to seduce Jesus to sin, he sheweth Him all the kingdoms of the world . . . And saith . . . All these things will I give Thee, if Thou wilt fall down and worship me. The Devil suggested an easy way by which Jesus might avoid all the pain and suffering of the cross and yet rule all the kingdoms of the world. Even one exception would make Jesus a sinner. When we allow for one exception, it usually leads to another, etc. Jesus' reply was: It is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve (Matthew 4:8-10).

Word Studies:

5:13 lost his savour =b> lost its usefulness; 5:18 one jot or one tittle =b> as the dot on the letter "i"; 5:22 say . . . Raca =b> maligns, slanders; 5:29 offend thee =b> causes you to sin; 5:33 to forswear =b> to swear falsely; 5:46 publicans =b> tax collectors; 6:19 corrupt =b> make money worthless; 6:22 single =b> free from deceit; 6:23 evil =b> selfish, sinful; 6:24 mammon =b> material things.

Cross References:

For Matthew 4:4: See Deuteronomy 8:3. Matthew 4:6: See Psalms 91:11-12. Matthew 4:7: See Deuteronomy 6:16. Matthew 4:10: See Deuteronomy 6:13. Matthew 4:15-16: See Isaiah 9:1-2. Matthew 5:21: See Exodus 20:13; Deuteronomy 5:17. Matthew 5:27: See Exodus 20:14; Deuteronomy 5:18. Matthew 5:31: See Deuteronomy 24:1. Matthew 5:33: See Numbers 30:2; Deuteronomy 23:21; Matthew 5:38: See Exodus 21:24; Leviticus 24:20; Deuteronomy 19:21. Matthew 5:43: See Leviticus 19:18.

Prayer Needs:

Pray for The Spanish International Shortwave Radio Broadcast in memory of Ervin Byrns Woodruff Jr. · The Arabic International Shortwave Radio Broadcast sponsored by Mary Hoffmeyer · Staff: Dr. John A. Hash Country: Mozambique (19 million) on the eastern coast of Africa Major language: Portuguese Religious freedom 40% worship of false gods, ancestral spirits, and some witchcraft; 23% Roman Catholic; 14% Protestant; 13% Muslim Prayer Suggestion: Pray for national leaders and their families (Ezra 6:10).

Memory Verse for the Week: Matthew 1:23

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