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Matthew 4:8-10

Being Content

8 Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; 9 And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me. 10 Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.

If there is one characteristic that best identifies the devil, aside from being evil, it is his persistence. Be aware that he will never stay away from you, will never quit tempting you, and will never run out of new ways to do it. He had been defeated by the Word of God twice, yet he was going to make another try; and it would not be the last time he and Jesus would meet.

If there is one characteristic that best identifies the human race, it is discontentment. Adam and Eve had the entire garden to themselves, not to mention all the world outside of the garden, except for the fruit of one tree. Yet, they were not satisfied until they ate of that forbidden fruit. God promised Abram a son, but Abram took Sarai's handmaid and fathered a son, because he was not content to wait. And God delivered Israel from the bondage of Egypt, but the people constantly complained of their circumstances. Man is never satisfied.

The desires of our flesh will not allow us to be satisfied, and the devil knows it. It is his delight to use this weak spot in the character of men to tempt us and to destroy us.

Apparently this was his plan to defeat God's intended redemption of our race. He appears to be telling Jesus, "Look here. You say that your Father provides all things and you do not want to tempt Him, but has He given you all of this? No! He wants you to die for it, but I'll give it all to you, if you will worship me in the same way you that you worship Him."

He took Jesus up to a high, unidentified mountain. "In a moment of time" (Lk 4:5) he showed him all the kingdoms of the world (not just Rome and Palestine). From this we can deduce that there was some sort of a vision involved. This is the devil's way of doing things. In a dream or vision everything looks so much more inviting. Men dream of what they could have, of imagined utopias that seem so much better than what God has given. And Satan says, "Go on! You deserve it."

Passing the whole world in front of Jesus, he claimed his authority over all of its governments. This was true. Jesus referred to him as the "prince of this world" (John 12:31,14:30, 16:11) and Paul called him the "god of this world" (2 Cor.4:4). Ruling authority was given into the devils hands (Lk 4:6), and he would offer it to Christ in return for His worship.

This was the final blow. "Get thee hence, Satan!" Jesus exclaimed. Jesus was never discontented, and all the power in the world could not tempt Him to turn from the Father and give His allegiance to another. Jesus knew that what God gives in the future is many times better than what we can sometimes easily and quickly grab now.

Scripture is once again the sword that Jesus uses to slay the dragon. He quoted from Deuteronomy 6:13 "Thou shalt fear the Lord thy God and serve Him." There was nothing left at this time for the devil to say or do, so he departed.

What are you dissatisfied with? Hasn't God treated you well? We all have those desires for something a little better than what we have. It is idolatry, and the devil is just waiting to snare us with it. Learn to be content with the things that God provides and you will also be able to say, "Get thee hence, Satan!"

Before The Throne:

Pray for contentment. Ask for the joy of seeing God's blessing in everything that you have and in every situation you face. Give special thanks for the work that you see God doing all around you. Be happy to be part of that work.

For Further Study:

(v.8 ) ** the devil. Matt 4:5; Luke 4:5-7; ** and sheweth. Matt 16:26; Esth 1:4; Esth 5:11; Ps 49:16-17; Dan 4:30; Heb 11:24-26; 1Pet 1:24; 1John 2:15; 1John 2:16; Rev 11:15;

** All. Matt 26:15; John 13:3; ** I give. 1Sam 2:7-8; Ps 72:11; Ps 113:7-8; Prov 8:15; Jer 27:5-6; Dan 2:37-38; Dan 4:32; Dan 5:18-19, 26-28; John 12:31; John 14:30; John 16:11; Rev 19:16; ** if. 1Cor 10:20-21; 2Cor 4:4; 1Tim 3:6; Rev 19:10; Rev 22:8-9;

(v.10) ** Get. Matt 16:23; Jas 4:7; 1Pet 5:9; ** Satan. 1Chr 21:1; Job 1:6, 12; Job 2:1; Ps 109:6; Zech 3:1-2; ** Thou shalt. Deut 6:13-14; Deut 10:20; Josh 24:14; 1Sam 7:3; Luke 4:8;


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