Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.” Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God...” Matthew 4:1-4
PRAYER FOCUS - I AM the Bread of Life
Isn’t it ironic that the devil tempted the Bread of Life to turn stones into bread to satisfy His hunger? In Matthew 3, the chapter just before this story, Jesus had been baptized by His cousin, John the Baptist, and a voice from heaven declared, “This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.” Jesus was able to resist the temptation because He knew that He was a Son who was loved by His Father. He had just heard that truth spoken from heaven. However, notice that Jesus did not resist this temptation by referring to what He had heard. He said, “It is written…” The written Word of God was Jesus’ response to every one of the temptations He experienced in the wilderness. “It is written…”
What can we learn from Jesus? First, Jesus resisted His enemy because He knew His identity as the Son of God. Second, Jesus resisted His enemy by quoting God’s Word.
Today, let’s concentrate on our identity in Christ when we are enticed to yield to temptation. We belong to Jesus. We are not condemned or rejected. Jesus took upon Himself all the punishment for our sins; therefore, we can come boldly before the Father, knowing that we, too, are His beloved children. Bask in that love and acceptance today. Find some Scripture passages that are particularly meaningful to you and affirm who you are in Christ. Place them somewhere visible in your home or save them as the lock screen of your phone during this fast. Remember that you are not defined by who you were without Jesus. You are now in Christ!
Here are a few verses to get you started:
· I am God’s child and loved by God (John 1:12 and 15:9)
· I am a friend of Jesus (John 15:15)
· I am the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus (2 Cor 5:21)
· I am a new creation (2 Cor 5:17)
· I am one spirit with the Lord (1 Cor 6:17)
· I am accepted in the beloved (Eph 1:6 KJV)
· I am God’s masterpiece (Eph 2:10 NLT)