A three-part series
According to the recollection of Matthew.
For this segment, we will look at the second temptation of Christ.
The position of Christ.
His response during the time of temptation.
The lesson we ought to learn today.
Therein, we read; the devil took Him (Christ) up into the holy city, and sets Him on a pinnacle of the temple, And said unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give His angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.
The phrase, the devil took Him up into the holy city, is far from a mental state wherewith our Lord simply thought on these things. On the contrary, this was carried out in the physical, as His fasting previously was real, so was His temptation. A genuine love of God must be proven to withstand the test of time.
So then, one might inquire, He is the Christ, why must the Devil take Him up? To better understand the situation is to look closely at the phrase “taketh him up” or took. In the Greek language, the phrase implies to the idea of one going along the side of another. Therefore, in no ways was Christ forced by the Devil against His will, nor was He mystically carried away without His consent. For He said, Satan has nothing in me.
Though our Lord endures the tremendous pressure of this sinful world, but let us know, He endures that we may prevail. If we being humans are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed. 2 Corinthians 4:8-9
What more about Christ our Perfection? For in him dwells all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. Colossians 2:9
That is to say, in Him there is continuously and permanently at home all the fullness of absolute deity in bodily fashion. It was once said, He laid aside His deity, without losing the possession of His deity.
He became like us, but without sinning, nor taking on our sinful nature that His righteousness may be imputed to us. This we know, temptation is not a sin, only when the wrongdoing of the temptation is embraced, then the temptation becomes sin.
The more we know, in knowing the will of God for us, the less we stumble.
In this, the Lord said, I must be about my Father’s business. Therein, nothing else matters, but the will of the Father to be carried out.
He was taken to the temple, for in all good men dwells the desire to ascend to a virtual state of perfection with God. Nevertheless, the desire to do good, but without the awareness, and reverence of God, man is vulnerable to failure, wherewith they are deceived to achieve. Herein we learn, let us keep our eyes on the Lord, and not on the desire of our hearts, lest we be deceived by what we see.
Like Christ, at the pinnacle of the temple, He saw the glory of the temple and all that it had to offer. All things He saw and more, were to be His, but only by the will of God. Thus, He replied, it is written again, thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.
He wasn't to be lifted up by religion, by the means of the pinnacle of the temple, but He was to be lifted up through the suffering on the Cross. For out of His suffering, comes the glory of God, unto all who would believe, and freely receive.
Having received this revelation, beware, your temptation is lurking ahead. Therefore, keep your eyes on the Lord, lest you be deceived.