January 08, 2019

How to Resist

Matthew 4:1-11

Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’”

—  Matthew 4:10

Have you ever been tempted to take something that didn’t belong to you, or something that wasn’t yours to have at the moment?

Maybe it was a piece of candy at the store, or a friend’s toy, or someone else’s jewelry. Maybe it was something that looked exciting and fun, but you also knew that it could be dangerous and hurt you. Maybe it was something you thought you deserved, or felt you just had to have, and you knew this might be your only chance to have it. After all, it looked so interesting and inviting—and even though you had been warned about it, you thought, “How could this possibly do any harm?”

As the devil tempted Jesus in the wilderness, he used all kinds of reasoning and tricks to try to convince Jesus that he should have certain things or do certain things. But, thankfully for us, Jesus never gave in to temptation. He saw through Satan’s lies and pushed away those temptations by recalling God’s words to us in Scripture.

We too can resist temptation—by the power of Christ’s Spirit in us. We may be curious about what we see in front of us, but, like Jesus, we need to let it go and move on. He endured temptation so that he could pass the test for our sake, and now we have his example of how to resist. We can trust that God will always provide a way out (1 Corinthians 10:13).

Lord, thank you for your example of how not to give in to temptations. Please give us the courage and power to resist, and please provide us a way out. In your name, Amen.

About the author — Beth Fellinger

Pastor Beth Fellinger is a wife, mother, and grandmother who has more than 40 years of experience in pastoral ministry. She and her husband, Barry, have created a missional community in their neighborhood called the Ugly Couch Cafe. From serving coffee at a blue picnic table on their front lawn, to praying with neighbors, to hosting faith gatherings on a weekly basis, the Ugly Couch Cafe has grown—and nothing gives Beth greater joy than introducing people to Jesus.

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