Last Sunday we had on our church sign that the message for Sunday was about Luke 4. Although Pastor Aaron quoted Luke 4, the temptation of Christ was not the theme of the sermon.
But the other day I happened to be reading that passage as well and was hit again by something that most people glance over. If you know the story Jesus is led by the Spirit to be tempted, He doesn't eat for 40 days, then satan tempts him three times, fails, and leaves "until an opportune time". Too often we read that and glance over a few little words...
Jesus wasn't only tempted three times. We read that story and hear it at church and think we could stand up to those three little temptations, it was hard for Jesus because He was hungry. Read it again:
Luke 4:1b-2a ~ The Spirit led Jesus into the desert where the devil tempted Jesus for forty days. (NCV)
All forty days Jesus was tempted. Can you imagine for 960 hours being tempted in every which way (and God setting it up so it can happen!)? Too often we simplify what Jesus went through here. It was a full forty days of being nagged by the devil to give up. As verse 14 says, Jesus was tempted "in every way". Although we only have three written down, those three didn't cover in every way. We have no idea what Jesus went through for us to be able to continue His ministry. There are 613 laws in the Old Testament for the people of God to follow, was Jesus tempted to break each one, 613 temptations on the Law alone?
We'll never know, but don't take it for granted that Jesus did a simple little thing for us here. He went through more than we know!