The Temptation of Now

The Temptation of Now - How Satan uses instant gratification and the promise of instant success to lead us away from doing God's will | Temptation | Success | Spiritual Warfare | Bible Quotes | Encouragement for Women | Battling the Enemy | www.worthbeyondriubies.com/temptation-now/
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Temptation!  Jesus stood on the mountain, gazing at the kingdoms of the earth in, what the Bible refers to as, a moment in time. He had been led there by Satan in a futile attempt to tempt Him into worshipping him.

“And the devil, taking him up into an high mountain, shewed unto him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it.” Luke 4:5-6 (KJV)

One thing that should be noted about this Biblical narrative of the temptation of Jesus is this; Jesus never argued or disputed Satan’s authority to give what he offered Him.  He replied by saying:

“And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind me, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.” Luke 4:8 (KJV)

Jesus never argued or disputed Satan's authority to give what he offered Him #temptation Click To Tweet

He disputed WHO was to be worshipped, but He did not dispute the right Satan had to offer Him the kingdoms of the world.  Satan specifically states that the power he has to give it to Him was “delivered unto me”.  It was a permissive power, much like the one we see offered to him by God in the book of Job.  We know God allows Satan certain power…for a time.

We know God allows Satan certain power...for a time. #spiritualwarfare Click To Tweet

But what exactly is Satan trying to achieve here?  He knows who He is.  He knows this is the promised Messiah.  He knows He is the Son of God. So why would Jesus be tempted by power?  Surely he knows Jesus ultimately possesses it.

What Satan is truly tempting Jesus with here is not power, but accelerated power.  He is offering Him power in the NOW.  Why wait Jesus?  I can give this all to you RIGHT NOW!  Just worship me and it’s yours today!  No cross, no sacrifice, no atoning death.  Power now!  This was an attempt to defeat the work of the cross before it happened in an effort to save his own hide using instant power!

How many times do we fall into the temptation of the NOW?  How many times do we fall into the trap of wanting the fast track?  The easy route?  The ability to bypass the line?  More power with more speed?

The Temptation of Now - How Satan uses instant gratification and the promise of instant success to lead us away from doing God's will | Temptation | Success | Spiritual Warfare | Bible Quotes | Encouragement for Women | Battling the Enemy | www.worthbeyondriubies.com/temptation-now/

Satan in all his trickery tempts us with power, yes.  But he more subtly tempts us by offering it the easy way or the dishonest way in order to get us there faster.  He may not usher us up to the top of the mountain to show us the kingdoms of the earth…he doesn’t have to.  We all have the ‘kingdoms” we have constructed that he can offer us.

How many times do we fall into the temptation of the NOW? #spiritualwarfare Click To Tweet

We are a society that thrives on the “instant”.

  • Instant gratification
  • Instant message
  • Instant rice
  • Instant bank deposit
  • Instant response
  • and on and on…..

We live in a world where we can instantly post to hundreds or thousands of people on social media.  We can instantly take a picture and post it for the world to see!  We can open an app and instantly see our bank account and instantly transfer funds.  Instant!!!

So, is it any surprise the enemy would use instant gratification as a form of temptation?  We hear “wait on God” and Satan yells…”NO!!  Have it NOW!!”

But Jesus’ response is speaking to us today.  When Satan yells NOW, Jesus says,

“…worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.”

We should not serve our jobs, our bank accounts, our position, our popularity or even our ministry….those things lead us to want more and more even faster. More subscribers, more page views, more comparison.  More money, more perks, more followers, more friends.  It goes on and on.

When we let go of those things, submit them to God and serve ONLY Him, then we will defeat the enemy and then we will know that what we have is from the Lord and blessed by Him and not us building our own Tower of Babel, striving to bring ourselves up higher and loftier.

“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” James 4:7 (KJV)

Resist the devil and he will flee from you.  Permissive power is all he has.  God is the One Who gives to all, and He gives it in a way that endures and that blesses.  Wait on God!  Submit to Him, resist the devil and he WILL flee!

Resist the devil and he will flee from you #spiritualwarfare Click To Tweet

Worth Beyond Rubies www.living31.org/christian-blog

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18 Comments

  1. Diane, your words are so timely. Just recently I caught myself wanting to take on a new project that I thought was Kingdom-worthy. It was clearly more than I could handle at the time and before I could jump in, God made it clear that my motives were all wrong. Even though it was a 'good' project, the timing was off and it just wasn't right for me because it would have distracted me from my true purpose of putting God first. The temptation of now didn't win this time! Thank God!

    • Amen Marva!!! I am so guilty of having done that...something looks good and then we jump on it. I have had to learn to stop and pray before i agree to anything!!

  2. Oh how true this is! We are a culture of instant gratification and unquenchable appetites! We need constant reminders like this to stay on guard and continue to serve God alone. No idols. Just Him!
    I think as Christian bloggers it is a constant battle to keep our goals set on bringing glory to God and not to getting bigger numbers, more subscribers, etc... I know I have to constantly check my heart! Thanks for this beautiful opportunity to re-focus!

    • Thank you!! I am so glad you found it encouraging!!

  3. What an amazing perspective! This is perfect for today's generation! Because they are being taught that everything is so readily available to them that they don't have to put up much effort.

    Sincerely Miss J
    www.sincerelymissj.com

  4. "Accelerated power." Love that image! It is so true. Too often I try to "hurry up" God, but as 2 Peter 3:9 says:
    "The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you,[a] not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance."

  5. So timely Diane! I have also notice how when "Now!" is being yelled at me, it puts such an uncomfortable pressure on me and is usually a sign that I need to just wait on the Lord!

    • Absolutely!! I notice the same thing. It just does not have a Holy Spirit ease to it when it comes with a NOW!

  6. Wow! This perspective of this familiar scripture is absolutely enlightening! Slowing down to receive directions from Holy Ghost is difficult in these times but absolutely necessary.

  7. This was SO good! I never thought of it this way! Great thought Diane <3

  8. So good! Often we don;t like to realize that submission is an all or nothing stance. Thank you for this post!

  9. Your comment that Jesus never disputed that Satan really DID "own the world" (otherwise, how could he give it away?) is so spot on. Many people don't realize this, but the Bible is clear that the wicked one is the ruler of the world (at this time at least, until he is abyssed), which explains a whole lot about why things are the way they are!

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