Lesson 108: Jesus in the Wilderness

Though this lesson is about Jesus’ devotion to His Father.  Though it involves His being tempted by Satan, the real point of the story is to further highlight Jesus’ relationship as part of the Trininty.  This account, comes on the heels of His baptism where he was affirmed by God and man to be The Son of God, who is sinless (didn’t need to be baptized, but did it in obedience to the Father – thereby ‘fulfilling all righteousness’).

Here again, we see Jesus’ righteousness on display. It starts with righteous worship of God – Jesus went to the wilderness to pray and fast. Then we see sinless obedience to God’s Law. He was confronted by the same tempter who deceived Adam and Eve. Being fully human, Jesus was weak and hungry, yet he did not sin. In answering Satan, each time, Jesus made reference
to another wilderness experience – the ‘wandering years’ after the exodus, and prior to receiving the Promised Land.

This story includes OT scripture references Jesus quoted. I highly recommend reading back over those accounts, (found in Deuteronomy and Exodus, and references are included in the narrative), remembering that being fully God, Jesus was there with the Israelites during their wilderness experience, so He’s not just quoting scripture, He’s speaking from first-hand experience regarding obedience to the Father.

Handout: Jesus is Tempted

Memory verse:
You must worship the Lord your God and serve only him. Matthew 4:10

Narrative:

Sometime after Jesus’ baptism, He was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted there by the devil. He spent forty days and forty nights fasting (not eating or drinking anything), and He became very hungry.

During that time the devil to Him to tempt Him. First, the devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become loaves of bread.”

But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say,

‘People do not live by bread alone,
but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” (Deut 8:3, Exodus 16:4)

Then the devil took him to the holy city, Jerusalem, to the highest point of the Temple, and said, “If you are the Son of God, jump off! For the Scriptures say,

‘He will order his angels to protect you.
And they will hold you up with their hands
so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.’”

Jesus responded, “The Scriptures also say, ‘You must not test the Lord your God.’” (Deut 6:16, Exodus 17:7)

Next the devil took him to the peak of a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. “I will give it all to you,” he said, “if you will kneel down and worship me.”

“Get out of here, Satan,” Jesus told him. “For the Scriptures say,

‘You must worship the Lord your God
and serve only him.’” (Deut 6:13)

Then the devil went away, and angels came and took care of Jesus.

Throughout His time on earth, Jesus was tempted many times and in many ways, but He never sinned (Hebrews 4:14-16); He led a perfect sinless life and is the ONLY one who ever has or ever will.