Have you ever been doing something difficult and knew you had the answer to making it easier available? This was a constant struggle for me in college, I did all my classes online and the answers to the questions were always readily available on the internet. Which is good
and in this instance a very bad thing. Anytime I didn’t know something, I could look it up. Just type out the question and find step-by-step directions on how to solve the problem I was facing. It’s fantastic. Ya know, right up until that moment when I needed to know how to do something and the internet was not readily available.
There’s a difference in using this incredible resource for learning versus using it to just answer a question. So often, I would use it just to get the answer and then swipe it away. In that mindset, I
never learned to solve the problem, only find the answer. So I paid $70k to learn how to look stuff up on Google. Talk about value!
In all seriousness, it would be incredibly beneficial to us if we would take the time to actually learn the skills required of us rather than just trying to complete the work given to us. The direction is there, yet we only access it when needed and immediately forget about it.
I will say, there is just something satisfying about looking up a problem on Google and solving it. I often wished I had the same thing for the problems I face in life.
If I could just say “Hey Siri, how do I make my kids listen?” that’d be awesome.
If I could just Google the answer to loneliness or anxiety, then I’d be good!
If I could pull out my phone and ask it “How do I like myself more?” and it solves the problem for me. Man, then I’d be good.
If the next time, I’m feeling tempted I could just type “How do I say no.” then I’d be fantastic.
Y’all all know this was just the build-up, we have all those answers and more, in scripture. You see, just like Google, we’ve gotta use it for more than just to find and regurgitate the answer, we have to learn it and have it dwell in us.
Even Jesus, when He was tempted by the devil repeated scripture. The God of the universe, He could have smited the devil out of existence before enjoying His cup of morning Folgers. But even He knew that the word is the Sword of the Spirit and His weapon to fight off the enemy.
Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by
the devil. 2 After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry.
3 The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell
these stones to become bread.”
4 Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone,
but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”
5 Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the
highest point of the temple. 6 “If you are the Son of God,” he said,
“throw yourself down. For it is written:
“‘He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up
in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a
7 Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your
God to the test.’”
8 Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all
the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. 9 “All this I will give
you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.”
10 Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written:
‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’”
11 Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.
How did Jesus respond when tempted?
“It is written”
Jesus didn’t make excuses, He didn’t provide a sound theological argument, He didn’t even run away. He wielded the weapon that Paul talks about in the Armor of God, the Sword of the Spirit and He used that weapon to fend off the enemy.
Let’s look at this text for a moment. It says that Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, notice that. It was not the devil that led Him there, it was God who did. God knows you need opportunities to say no if you’re going to grow. ****
Jesus is led into the wilderness, He fasts for 40 days and 40 nights. The scripture literally says He is HUNGRY! Then the devil shows up and immediately challenges God the Father, he says “If you are the Son of God,” wait a minute… back up.. rewind. If? Because immediately before this, Jesus is baptized by John the Baptist and the Holy Spirit descends on Him and God the Father says “This is my Son, whom I love; with Him, I am well pleased.”
This is the same lie that the devil told Adam and Eve back in the garden. God lied to you, if you are the Son of God then prove it.
Can you not eat from any of the trees? Oh, it will surely not kill you.
He’s a liar, that’s all he can do. He’s a liar and a tempter. He knew that Jesus would be hungry and so he came to tempt Him with food. He does the same thing to us. He lies to us and tempts us. The devil cannot make you do anything, however, he will tempt you to make bad decisions on your own.
Ever noticed when you’re trying to break an addiction, a friend shows up with alcohol or a pill. Trying to quit looking at porn and you’ll notice a magazine or a hundred other forms of temptation. Trying to get closer to God and read your bible more, all of a sudden your life
becomes so busy that you forget about those goals you had. He’s tempting you with what you want. The devil never comes and offers you stuff that looks bad to your sight. When he tempted Eve to eat the fruit, it said that it looked beautiful and good to eat. The temptation looks good but it will lead to your destruction. Do not follow! Respond how Jesus does.
But how does Jesus respond? He responds with His weapon, we learn when Paul writes about the Armor of God that the bible, the Word of God is our Sword of the Spirit. Jesus wields this sword against the enemy, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”
It is written. He responds with scripture. He responds with the very word of God. Jesus said “It is written” but so often in our lives, we can’t say “It is written” because we don’t know what is written. So when satan comes to us and starts twisting the words of God, we don’t know what to say.
As we get into scripture, then we will see that the devil is a liar, that’s all he can do. He speaks lies to us all the time: they don’t love you. Why would anyone love you? You don’t have friends. No one likes you. You don’t even like yourself. They were just being nice. Your gf/bf is probably talking to someone else right now. Imagine if your family died. You are nothing. You have no purpose. You are useless.
All he can do is lie to you. But none of it is true.
The enemy says “You are nothing.” But it is written: “that Greater is He that is in me than he that is in the world.”
He’s going to say, “You have no purpose.” It is written: “For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord, plans to prosper you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
He’ll say “You won’t make it.” It is written: “That the Lord is my shepherd and I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil for you art with me.”
If all you are hearing is the lies of the enemy, tune them out and turn to the Word of God. You want the answer to everyday life, want the answers to overcome, loneliness, insecurity, anxiety, and the troubles of this world? The answer is written.
Get into the Word of God. Build a daily habit of searching His word for answers, not just to answer the question but to really learn it, allow it to dwell in you. So when the enemy attacks, you have the Sword of the Spirit wielded and ready to go.