Lessons Learned In The Wilderness – Romans 8:23

cropped-bible-cross1.jpgRomans 8:28 MSG  That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good.

Lately I have been fixated on why certain things happen in one’s life.  For myself it is dealing with health issues, fractures in my back caused by osteoporosis.

I truly believe that God’s word is absolute and it is true.  Yet, the above verse brings somewhat of a contradiction in the way I was taught growing up.  If I believe all other Scripture is truth, then, I must believe that this scripture in Romans is also factual.

I am not quite sure where theology went sideways, but, it truly has.  Somehow doctrine has been subverted.  

It has been taught for as long as I can recollect that any sickness is of the devil.  There are some within the charismatic movement that teach if you are sick there must be sin in your life.  Or if you are not healed you must not have enough faith.  To both of these teachings I say, heresy, false doctrine.

In a previous article I took a look at the life of Job.  He was sinless, yet he went through hell and back.  Lost all of his family, home, crops, and livestock.  The people around him said that God must be angry with him.  His wife mocked him and told him, “curse God and die”.  The true reason is in the first verses of the book of Job.  Satan told God that if God would remove His protection from around Job, Job would turn against God.  God took down the protection so that the enemy could do all he wanted, except for, he could not take Job’s life.  Job came out spotless, sinless, and never once accused God foolishly.  The end for Job was greater than the beginning of his life.

There is another school of thought that declares, if you are sick God must be teaching you a lesson, that’s erroneous.  God does not teach us lessons by giving to us sickness or ill in our body.  We sometimes as earthly parents teach our children how to be safe around the house, but we do not cause them pain to teach that lesson.

So, it is my belief and opinion that when we are faced with such challenges in our life that maybe, just maybe, God is showing the enemy that He has faith in us not to charge God foolishly.

Now, with all that said I would like to bring to your attention the fourth chapter of the Book of Matthew and the record of when Christ went into the wilderness and faced temptation.  It was in this wilderness account that we have lessons that we can learn and apply to our everyday life.

It is my objective for the next several writings to take and delve into that account of the temptation of Christ and break it down lesson by lesson.

Matthew 4:   MSG
1  Next Jesus was taken into the wild by the Spirit for the Test. The Devil was ready to give it.
2  Jesus prepared for the Test by fasting forty days and forty nights. That left him, of course, in a state of extreme hunger,
3  which the Devil took advantage of in the first test: “Since you are God’s Son, speak the word that will turn these stones into loaves of bread.”
4  Jesus answered by quoting Deuteronomy: “It takes more than bread to stay alive. It takes a steady stream of words from God’s mouth.”
5  For the second test the Devil took him to the Holy City. He sat him on top of the Temple and said,
6  “Since you are God’s Son, jump.” The Devil goaded him by quoting Psalm 91: “He has placed you in the care of angels. They will catch you so that you won’t so much as stub your toe on a stone.”
7  Jesus countered with another citation from Deuteronomy: “Don’t you dare test the Lord your God.”
8  For the third test, the Devil took him on the peak of a huge mountain. He gestured expansively, pointing out all the earth’s kingdoms, how glorious they all were.
9  Then he said, “They’re yours—lock, stock, and barrel. Just go down on your knees and worship me, and they’re yours.”
10  Jesus’ refusal was curt: “Beat it, Satan!” He backed his rebuke with a third quotation from Deuteronomy: “Worship the Lord your God, and only him. Serve him with absolute single-heartedness.”
11  The Test was over. The Devil left. And in his place, angels! Angels came and took care of Jesus’ needs.

I would like to invite you to join with me to see what gem of truth we can find in the above eleven verses of Matthew chapter four.

I would encourage you to study this with me, have a pen and notepad at the ready.  Maybe, have a friend or a group to study, “Lessons Learned In The Wilderness”.

 

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