Back on track with 47 days of Easter (I did the math and that’s how long Lent is). From here on out I will post one blog entry every weekday + Saturdays about Easter-like topics. I have covered the basic background HERE, HERE and HERE from the bunnies to Jesus and now I will dive head on into 20 days of 40 days in the desert with Jesus (Luke 4 : 1-13) and offer up different daily challenges as we go.
Back story: after being baptized by John, Jesus ventures into the desert for 40 days without food and is tempted by Satan.
Day 1 | “Led by the Spirit”
This is the first major point in Jesus’ journey through the desert. Luke 4:1 says, “Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the desert…” This is such a beautiful picture because it states that Jesus was specifically supposed to wander the desert for 40 days. Why is this beautiful? And why was he led into the desert to starve? Perhaps because God knew this time in the desert would give the Bible, and therefore give us, an essential story that would teach us how to over come temptation.
I also love this moment because I’ve realized that, at this point in time, Jesus was the only living person with the Holy Spirit guiding him. It was only after his resurrection that the Holy Spirit was given to Christians.
But back to the main point… sometimes the Holy Spirit leads us into undesirable places for His greater purpose. This moment in the Bible is a clear indication of that. It is a season in which Jesus is tried and tested by the Evil One himself and Jesus wins over even in His time of great weakness.
But how did he do this? By wearing the armor of God, “Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes” (Ephesians 6:11). Ephesians 6: 10-18 clearly lays the armor of God out for us and when Jesus spends these 40 days in the desert he shows us what it looks like to use it against the devil and the guard your heart.
- “Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist”(Ephesians 6:14)
- “With the breastplate of righteousness in place” (Ephesians 6:14)
- “With your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace” (Ephesians 6:15)
- “Take up the shield of faith” (Ephesians 6:16)
- “Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Ephesians 6:17)
In order to subdue Satan and guard himself against the temptations he rails at him Jesus simply states scripture back to Satan in answer to his lies. This is the key to guarding our heart, keeping the word of God on our hearts and knowing it well enough to defend ourselves against the lies we face daily. It is the truth, righteousness, readiness, and faith that comes from the saving and guiding word of God that keep us grounded and faithful. And in order to keep the word of the Lord on our hearts and coursing through our bodies protectively is to saturate our mind, body, and soul with the words.
Challenge 1 | Read the Bible today
I would say “read the Bible every day” because that is really what is best but I’ll take you there in baby steps. Today, if you don’t know where to start, read Luke 4 or Ephesians 6.
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