Mastering the Art of Proper Timing – My Daily Bread!
Our courage to follow our Lord and Savior is taken from Jesus’ words found in Matthew 4:4, NIV, which reads:
“Jesus answered, it is written Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.”
We are all familiar with the temptations of Christ by the devil. These words are Jesus’ response to the first temptation by Satan who was determined to block God’s purpose by trying to get Jesus to succumb to His own physical needs and desires. Jesus was tired and hungry and most likely in a physically weaken state for we are told “after fasting forty days and forty nights, He was hungry. The tempter came to Him and said, ‘If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread’”. (Matthew 4: 2-3, NIV)
Jesus being hungry was a natural desire and there was nothing at all wrong with seeking food to satisfy His hunger. However, Jesus had come into the desert to fast and pray, not to eat. During His 40 day fast Jesus was totally devoting himself to God, nothing else was to come before that. Just as Jesus set aside His divinity to fully experience humanity while on earth, so to even in this great moment of weakness He kept His focus on God’s will for His life, not on gratifying the flesh. He chose not to use His divine power to gratify His human desire for food. Jesus’ words were about overcoming the devil with the Word of God. He showed us that in our temptation we need to focus even more closely on the Word of God and then obey it.
Satan is also always seeking to block God’s purpose in our lives. As in the case with Jesus, he attacks us at our weakest moments, attempts to turn something that God intends for good, (in this case satisfying a natural God given desire for food) into something that would dishonor us before God. And the devil’s greatest gift is negotiating timing to our disadvantage. What does this mean? Well something like this: Jesus could eat, but just not then, we can engage in sexual intercourse, just not before marriage, we can eat food, just not steal to do it. Saints, the devil’s biggest trap is to try to make us feel that we deserve what we want when we want it, in our own timing. The timing of fulfilling our God given natural desires is critical and important in the life of the Christian who is devoted to God, because in it is the character of our obedience!
So pay close attention to how Jesus handled Satan. He took him to the Word. And in this case He confirmed God’s sovereignty over His life and most importantly surrendered Himself to God’s plan. Jesus reaffirmed the superiority of the supernatural or the Spirit over the natural. In these very words that are so precious and dear to Christians, Jesus pointed us to living on the breath of God’s word, not in the flesh of our desires. Saints, let us commit ourselves to make every effort not to run ahead or behind our God or His will for your life, but stay in the breath of His Word for Jesus tells us “The Spirit gives life, the flesh counts for nothing. The Words I have spoken to you are Spirit and they are life!” (John 6: 63, NIV) Be blessed all ye Saints who cherish the Living God and His Word, thank Him for His holy truths that keep us on His timing!
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