DOUBT AND THE DEVIL
Mark 1:10-13 “He saw the heavens parting and the Spirit descending upon Him like a dove. Then a voice came from heaven, ‘You are My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.’ Immediately the Spirit drove Him into the wilderness. And He was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan…”
His mother had told him about the angels (Lk 1)
Joseph had told him about the dreams (Mt 2)
Many times He had heard about the wise men and the shepherds (Lk 2, Mt 2)
And on this day, His Father God, audibly declared from heaven “YOU are MY beloved Son”
And the Spirit visibly descends upon Him
Jesus now has the power “through the eternal Spirit, [to] offer Himself without spot to God” (Hb 9:14)
The following 40 days of temptation are one of the greatest spiritual events recorded in the Bible
An epic contest that will decide whether you and I will be ruled by the Devil or redeemed by the Lord
Over the next few days, we will look at Jesus’ victory over temptation together and find that we have power to do the same…
(Hb 2:18) “For in that He Himself has suffered, BEING TEMPTED, He is able to aid those who are tempted”
(1 Cor 10:13) “God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it”
Let’s begin by looking at Doubt and the Devil...
What had Jesus heard from God?
“You are My beloved Son”
Yet, the first recorded words of the Devil in the New Testament are…
“If You are the Son of God…” (Mt 4:3)
(Satan and his demons knew exactly who Jesus was [Mk 1:24])
What are the first recorded words of the Devil in the Old Testament?
“Has God indeed said…” (Gen 3:1)
We need to understand that the power of the enemy is never stronger than when we doubt what God has said to us!
That is why Ephesians 6:16 says we need a shield of FAITH to protect us from the Devil!
At some point, every believer will struggle with, “Am I really saved” or “Does God really exist”
Don’t feel condemned when this happens…
The disciples had witnessed Jesus’ death, resurrection from the dead and were now looking right at Him, and…
“They saw Him [and] worshiped Him; but some doubted.” (Mt 28:17)
The greatest of the prophets, John the Baptist (Lk 7:28), had seen the Holy Spirit descend upon Jesus, had heard God’s audible voice from heaven and had openly “testified that this is the Son of God” (Jn 1:34) and…
Yet, when imprisoned, he sent his disciples to ask the Master, “Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?” (Mt 11:3)
I have personally witnessed a blind man instantly healed (as testified by non-christian doctors and the state of Oregon in court)
I have watched the total healing of a child covered in lesions and scars for more than 10 years
I have seen the miraculous, complete and instant restoration of a man dying from an incurable blood disease (to the utter astonishment of his doctors)
Yet, sometimes I still struggle with doubt...until I raise up my shield of faith in what God has said!
Today, I encourage you to do the same...
If you are struggling with doubt, remember what you KNOW God has said
Raise up your own shield of faith by reminding yourself what you KNOW to be true
“Resist the devil…he will flee from you” (Jm 4:7)
To be continued…
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