Alex Enabnit – Programming Coordinator
Last week we celebrated Christmas as we dove back into The Story with the birth of Jesus… If you missed it, Merry Belated Christmas! This week we jumped into the beginning of Jesus’ ministry.
There were three significant events that marked the very beginning of Jesus’ ministry:
First, Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist – not to show that He was “putting to death” His old life since, after all, Jesus was perfect; He did this rather to set the example for all of His followers to come. Second came what Cal calls Jesus’ “coronation.” As soon as Jesus came out of the water, we see God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit all in one setting. This was a mountaintop experience! You’d expect Jesus to take this momentum and immediately begin gaining more followers. You’ll find that wasn’t the case, however, because as soon as Jesus was baptized, Satan had Him in his sights.
Third, Jesus was led into the wilderness where he fasted for forty days and then was tempted by Satan. In other words, Satan waited until Jesus was at His absolute weakest, and THEN he started the “testing.” This is Satan’s tactic! He hits you while you’re down. Luckily for all of us, Jesus prevailed! We can all be encouraged by the fact that we are not alone in our temptations – Jesus empathizes with us because He knows exactly what it’s like to be in that battle.
Verses and quotes from the message:
1 John 3:8b; Hebrews 2:14-15; Luke 3:23; John 1:29; Matthew 3:13-17; Matthew 4:1-10; James 1:13; Genesis 22:1; Job 23:10; James 1:2-4; Hebrews 4:15-16
“Like single combat warriors, two giants of the cosmos converged on a scene of desolation. One just beginning his mission in enemy territory, arrived in a badly weakened state. The other, confident and on home turf, seized the initiative.” Philip Yancey
“Jesus was this hard working, Carhart wearing, calloused hands, dirt under the finger nails, truck driving kind of guy from the boonies.” Mike Breaux
“What we call temptation is not meant to MAKE us sin; it is meant to enable us to CONQUER sin. It is not meant to make us BAD, it is meant to make us GOOD. It is not meant to WEAKEN us, it is meant to make us emerge STRONGER and FINER and PURER from the ordeal.” William Barclay
“He doesn’t challenge us to a fair fight. No, he is the master of the trapdoor and the author of weak moments. He waits until your back is turned. He waits until your defense is down. He waits until the bell has rung and you are walking back to your corner. Then he aims his dart at your weakest point and bull’s eye! You lose your temper. You lust. You fall. You take a drag. You buy a drink. You kiss the woman. You follow the crowd. You rationalize. You forget who you are. You walk into her room. You break your promise. You buy the magazine. You deny your Master.” Max Lucado
“Sympathy with the sinner in his trial does not depend on the experience of sin, but on the experience of the strength of the temptation to sin, which only the sinless can know in its full intensity. He who falls yields before the last strain.” Wescott
Big idea: The surest way to lose a battle is to be unaware you are in one.
Your Love Never Fails – Anthony Skinner
One Thing Remains – Jesus Culture
You Made a Way – Central Music
Because of Your Love – Phil Wickham