I just want to share something with everybody who might come across this, and I hope that it helps everyone who might be seeking God like I am, and in seeking I found something today. I want to share the treasure that I found today with you. I learnt most of the following from the video that I had posted yesterday, but I am also confirming that these things are awesome and true from my own studies of the bible and from other teachers.
So Matthew 4:4 - Jesus is being led to the wilderness and be tempted by the devil and the devil is as usual very clever, he knows that Jesus is weak, hungry, as he has been fasting for 40 days.
The devil always attacks when we are the weakest - mentally, physically and emotionally. Therefore it explains why Jesus warned us that the devil is like a lion, ready to devour any prey that falls into its hands.
So then the devil said - turn this into bread if you are the son of God!
He knows that Jesus is the son of God; for it is the truth. He here tries to use the truth in order to tempt Jesus. I remember reading a Joyce Meyer book and she said - the devil isn’t about to bring a bottle of poison and label it poison and tell you about what it will do to you and end it with “Would you like some?”. It is therefore important to know that the devil will always use something that is good, the truth from God, or a Godly thing and perverse it (like he perverses sex by turning it into porn); to confuse, to “steal, kill, and destroy”. He is crafty. Recall (and remember!) that this is characteristic of him. He questioned Eve in the garden of Eden. “Did God really say…” He always, and will always question us, question our decisions, especially when they are good. Especially when they are of and from God. This is because he wants us to be as shitty as possible.
This is also confirmed by Jesus when he reminded us to always be alert, always be weary of the devil.
Jesus rebukes him by saying “It is written.”
This means that Jesus is confident of this thing that has been written. So who is Jesus confident in? It cannot be man, because in John 2:24-25, it says
24But Jesus would not entrust himself to them, for he knew all men. 25He did not need man’s testimony about man, for he knew what was in a man.
Therefore, Jesus was not being confident of something that men/ a man wrote, but of a promise of God.
So it comforts me that Jesus is confident of this promise. Therefore if Jesus is confident of this promise, I am confident of this promise!!
What is this promise? Referring to Matthew 4:4.
1. Man does not live on bread alone - as Christians, I think that we know very well what this means. We cannot live and not have God. I cannot comprehend how to do it. For God sustains me. He does. Without Him I have felt empty, lonely, bitter, resentful and sad. Since beginning my true journey with him in the last 3 years, I have been rejuvenated, refreshed, rebuilt, reminded. That is my adventure. I still stumble, I do. Being a Christian provides me with many very real struggles and challenges that I know that have been set in motion that I may be strong. For in order for the largest bridges to be built to transport people from A to B, they need to be fortified. I need a good foundation. I need experiences. And only the chosen go through such “suffering” as Paul mentioned (sorry, was it Peter? I think that it was Paul) as God is preparing us for bigger things. What more Jesus said for us never to have to worry about provision, about food, about clothes because the Father knows that we need all these things, seek ye first the kingdom of God and all these will be added onto you. Plus! Jesus also said that even Solomon could not fathom splendor such as these - God clothes the lilies and feeds the sparrows. They never had to worry, what more us?
2. More importantly I think that we need to remember this portion of the verse (Matthew 4:4) - but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.
This is important because - this means that through the Word, there is life. And we know that the Word is also Jesus, and is also referring to the bible. There is life through Jesus - referring to our salvation. There is life in studying the bible. Before I tell you why I think that there is life in studying the bible, let me say that I understand legalism, and I am not promoting that. But if there is life in reading the Word, how I interpret this is that the Word is like food to our souls (quoting the pastor in the video posted yesterday), like food is to our bodies.
This is why, and to illustrate my point, I need to tell you about what I am going through. I am going through a very real, very tough, very trying period. I have been bombarded with many thoughts, confusing and confounding ideas. Some are my own, while others have been presented to me by the devil. I know that I have a battlefield in my head (read Joyce Meyer’s Battlefield of the Mind); I know that I can build habits to conquer these thoughts. So what type of habits? What should I be thinking about? What thoughts should I replace my current ones with? How can I hear the voice of God? How do I know that the path that I am taking is right in God’s eyes?
I want to live the life that God has intended for me and this is my answer today- study the bible. Study the word. Jesus has trust in this written promise. That I shall live on every word that comes from the mouth of God. So I shall have trust in the same promise.
Another important reason to know the Word (also Jesus; and the bible because in the bible we find His promises), is that when we are rooted deep in God’s promises for us, we know that to say to rebuke the devil when he attempts to trick us - like he did to Eve and Jesus. Therefore, the promises in the bible provides protection. Because rebuking the devil with the Word (promise) was what Jesus did, and He succeeded!
Unlike Eve who discussed her situation or the devil’s suggestion with him (the devil), Jesus dismisses the devil so simply and readily with the verse. Not only because He is the Word but because He knows the Word (promises). In knowing the Word, He knows the promises of God. And these promises are based on the love of God. And because God’s love is perfect, he is everlasting and never changes, we can trust these promises.
Therefore when we know the bible, when we know God’s promises, we are able to understand His love for us. In so we understand that the premise of the devil’s arguments, suggestions and whispers become clearly lies. They are meant to deceive us, that we may never live the life that God wants us to live.
In other words, when we are rooted in God’s words, (bible - promises - love), we will know what to tell the devil and drive him away. This is also ascertained in Jesus’ response to the devil - Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word from the mouth of God. He knew exactly what to say.
Learning from His response, it lets us know that we are and can be if we choose to be equipped with the word, like He is to rebuke the devil. The Word is there to always guide us and remind us of God’s love that we may be rooted, that we are not confused when tricked, that we may never be uprooted, and never lose heart because of “small smouldering stubs of firewood” Isaiah 7:4. These suggestions, questioning, whispers and odd ideas may seem very real; BUT these tricks and lies are like a large approaching fire, but because we have already been equipped with the Word - Jesus in us, plus the bible that is full of God’s promises to carry us through the storm, for us to walk on water, for us to turn water into wine, we need not be tricked. We can put out the smouldering stubs of firewood with God’s word.
About Jesus always being with us - Jesus has it covered too. Just before He ascended to Heaven, he said in Matthew 28:20 … And surely I am with you always, to the very end of age. If God’s with me, then who can be against me! What more now I have discovered that not only is Christ dwelling within me, I am also further equipped with the word. I visualise a large protective bubble over me, and now with understanding God’s promises through studying the bible, I am building fences, defences and shields; one by one with God.
I hope that you benefit from what I have learnt today! What a lot to learn from even just 1 verse! I thank God today that He has taught me that in studying the Word, I will know His promises, and thereby He is equipping me with weapons to fight back - For no weapons formed against me shall prosper, and you will refute every tongue that accuses you. (Isaiah 54:17). Surely I shall refute every tongue that accuses me, and I don’t even have to come up with the words myself! :)
I want to present to you that not only in knowing the Word (Jesus and God’s promises) equips us with shields and weapons to protect ourselves, but basking in His perfect love is something that is so… wonderful, comforting and secure. I urge, if you do not already know God to seek Him. I challenge you to be unable to find Him. I do. Because every time that I had been lost, I found Him because He came seeking after me. And every time that I had challenged somebody to find Him, they found Him because He came seeking after them. He does this freely for anyone who believes. Believe and give it a shot!!