The Temptation of Christ
Matthew 4:1-14

Objective Sentence: Everyone can overcome temptation by understanding the areas that the devil seeks to get us to compromise.

Aim: The aim of this message is to help people understand the temptation process and learn to overcome the attacks of the devil. If they have failed to seek forgiveness from God.

Opening statements:

Author Unknown: All the water in the world, however hard it tires, can never sink the smallest ship unless it gets inside, and all the evil in the world, the blackest kind of sin, can never hurt you in the least, unless you let it in.

Charles H. Brent: Only he who flings himself upward when the pull comes to drag him down, can hope to break the force of temptation.

Robert M’Cheyne: I am tempted to think that I am now an established Christian—that I have overcome this or that lust so long—that I have got into the habit of the opposite grace—so that there is no fear and I may venture very near the temptation—nearer than other men or women. This is a life of Satan. One might as well speak of gunpowder getting by habit of resisting fire, so as not to catch spark. As long as powder is wet, it resists the spark; but when it becomes, it is ready to explode at the first touch. As long as the Spriti swells in temptation, I may reckon upon God carrying me through. But when the Spirit leaves me, I am like dry gunpowder.

Initial Invitation:

#1. Power (Matthew 4:3-4 turn these stones into bread)

A. Pastor Dan: There are two ways that people abuse the power they have been given. One way people abuse power is to consume it upon themselves, using their gift upon themselves without regard for the purpose for which it was given. Another way is to neglect the gift and not use it at all.

1. Satan tempted Jesus to use His power for His own benefit.
a. George Bush Sn.: Power is for the purpose of helping people.
b. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 Your life is not your own…
c. Pastor Dan: God has given us power and put the responsibility for making good choices in our hands. We have power over our desires, over our thoughts, over our body, over our money and power over our time.
d. Judges 16:20-21 Samson abused the power of god

2. Neglect is worse form of abuse (Crandal Miller)
a. Matthew 25:14-30
b. Matthew 25:31-46 Parable of the Son of Man judging the nations where He describes Himself as being naked, hungry and in prison.

Middle Invitation

#2. Privilege (Matthew 4:6 jump from the pinacle)

A. Pastor Dan: Satan sought to lure Christ into disobedience by causing him to take his privilege of eternal security in God for granted. We abuse our privilege as sons and daughters in two ways:

1. We abuse our privilege by manufacturing danger
a. God does not protect us from danger we manufacture for ourselves.
a. Satan sought to lure into behavior that was irresponsible behavior that would in sin and death.
b. Pastor Dan: We have no right to expect God’s protection in dangers that we manufacture for ourselves. He or she that flirts with temptation invites his or her own ruin. God will catch you only when He tells you to jump.
c. Romans 8:14 As many as are led by the Spirit of God are the Sons of God. When you walk in relationship with God you give up your right to manage yourself.
A. EZ.18:20-24; HEB.2:1-3; 3:6,12,14; 6:4-6; 10:26-31; 12:25; 2 PET.2:14-15; 20-21; 1 JN.3:9
We are free from the law but bound to obedience

2. We abuse our privilege by overstepping our boundaries
a. 1 Samuel 15:12-17 King Saul overstepped his boundry
b. 1 Samuel 16:13-14 The Spirit of God departs for Saul
c. 2 Chronicles 26:5, 16-20 Uzziah prospered as long as he sought the Lord but when he became strong he fell. He transgressed against God by entering the temple to burn incense on the altar. God smote him with leposy.

#3. Priority (Matthew 4:8-11 all this I will give you…)

A. Pastor Dan: Satan attempted to lure Christ into a compromise and cause Him to misalign his priority by putting His work before His relationship with God.

1. We misalign our priorities by failing to make our relationship with the Lord a first concern in our lives
a. Matthew 6:33

2. We misalign our priorities by making our work for God more important than our walk with God
a. Matthew 7:21-24 cast out devils, prophesied, did works
b. Pastor Dan: One of our big problems is attempting to center God around our lives instead of centering our lives around God.

Closing: 1 John 1:9 If you are looking only for forgiveness you are not seeking enough from God. That is only half the solution. We must seek God for His power to cleanse and purge from us the behavior that He forgives.