Mark 10:12-13 ERV; Then the Spirit sent Jesus into the desert alone. He was there for 40 days, being tempted by Satan. During this time he was out among the wild animals. Then angels came and helped him.
This story has always intrigued me for several reasons. First of all, who in their right mind would go into a desert alone? He had no tent, no camping gear, no food or water, AND, there were wild animals! Some of us wouldn’t make it in a rural campsite for 3 days with all the equipment needed to make up camp. Let’s top that off with these luxury accommodations, that he was tempted the entire time by Satan. That’s worse then telling ghost stories around a campfire with a bunch of other people! I don’t know about you, but I would have been scared out of my mind and running our after the first night!
Then what’s the lesson in this wilderness experience? What can we learn from this experience Jesus went through? I believe we have all been in dry and lonely places. We’ve all been tempted, harassed and afraid. Matthews account of this gives a little more detail of what happened. You can find it in Matthew chapter 4 and I encourage you to read it for yourself. He shows Jesus answering every temptation with the Word of God. He used the Word as it should be used; as a weapon.
You see, the devil can’t refute the truth of the Word of God. By using the Word, we win every time regardless of the situation we face. If the devil tries to convince you that you’re weak and exhausted, you can answer him, “The joy of the Lord is my strength!” and, “I will run and not be weary, I will walk and not faint!” When he tempts you to believe that you’ve got a horrid disease or sickness in your body, you can say that, “By the stripes Jesus took on his back, I am healed!” and “He sent forth his Word and healed them and delivered them from all their diseases!” That Word is for someone reading this today. Don’t allow the devil to mess with your mind and emotions. Tell him what the Word says. He knows it, he’s just trying to see if YOU know it.
You can’t expect to put out a forest fire with a squirt gun. No, you have to pull out the water planes and call in reinforcements from other cities. So if you’re facing something that’s overwhelming you, find one or two of your friends who are strong in faith and know the Word. Tell them what you’re facing and what you’re believing for so that they can stand with you and help you fight the battle. Resist the temptation to talk about the problem, especially to people who are going to sympathize with you instead of bolstering your faith. You don’t need whiners, you need winners!
Father, I sense that someone out there is fighting a raging battle right now. I ask that You would fortify their faith. As they read the Word this morning, show them how victorious they are in You. May they never doubt that You’re doing a good and perfect work in them and are faithful to keep them. You said to acknowledge You in all our ways and You would direct our steps. Thank you Father. Great Physician, whatever we face, we know You are excellent in all Your ways. Great Provider, You have taken into account everything we will ever need for life and fulfilling Your purpose and we thank You for that provision. It’s in Jesus’ name we pray. Amen