**The scripture can be found in the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) of the Bible….I pray that you are ENCOURAGED!
Matthew 3:16, “And when Jesus had been baptized (made it apparent to the public-the perceiving), just as he came up from (what have you risen above/from?)) the water (have you been washed/cleansed or are you just wearing new clothes?), suddenly (unexpectedly) the heavens were opened (invited/welcoming) to him and he saw (what are you looking at?) the Spirit of God descending (God will meet you where you are-meaning He has also (prior to)-ascended *All have fallen/descended) like a dove and alighting on him.”
Matthew 3:17, “And a voice from heaven (God will always send confirmation-don’t doubt, just wait…who are you listening to? Where do they come from?) said, “‘ This is my Son, the Beloved, with whom I am well pleased.”‘
Matthew 4:1, “Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.” (who are you following? God doesn’t take you where He isn’t willing to go. ) * ‘devil’ is lowercase while Jesus & Spirit are capitalized…Have you made your own capitalization on some lowercase people or things in your life?)
Matthew 4:2, “He fasted forty days and forty nights, and afterwards he was famished.” (Use the evidence of your ‘experience with God’ to remain faithful…famished doesn’t mean forgotten).
Matthew 4:3, “The tempter came and said to him, ‘if you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.’” (those who or those things that tempt you…comes after you are famished-after you’ve been led to be set apart (from the perceiving) and decide to participate in PROMISE…Don’t allow your temptation to cause you to question who you are; “if you are…”
Matthew 4:4, “But he answered, ‘it is written, One does not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” (Won’t God provide? He gave an answer when no question was asked; the answer is in His word! Even when you don’t know how or consider asking God, He will answer because He already knows…)
Matthew 4:5, “Then the devil took him to the holy city and placed him on the pinnacle of the temple, (the devil will take you to some places because you stood firm where he found you. BUT if he can get you isolated from the evidence of your ‘experience with God’ he’ll attempt to have you test God-know that God is always tried and true, test Him if you will…He is who He is.)
Matthew 4:6, “saying to him, ‘if you are the Son of God, throw yourself down; for it is written, ‘He will command his angels concerning you, and on their hands they will bear you up, so that you will not dash your foot against a stone.’” (The tempter is well versed in the word, perhaps even knows the power of the word…BUT the tempter wants to be persuaded as to if YOU know the power of the word. Remember like temptation, the tempter is persistent-trust the transformation of your famished state).
Matthew 4:7, “Jesus said to him, ‘Again it is written, Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’” (who/what is your God? If you have tested it, has it failed? If so, why not search for One who can do all things but fail??)
Matthew 4:8-9, “Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor; and he said to him, ‘All this I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.’” (Be careful of when you believe that which people say about themselves…grammatically a capitalized ‘I’ is in order but consider that the devil has capitalized its own lowercase self…lol yes, ‘its’ – the devil is a spirit…Poor devil/tempter-it failed the test that it was giving. It kept taking Jesus higher! Where has the devil taken you? Has your position changed? ”… All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.” What’s the difference of being led and being taken? In one instance, one is following another… (the devil’s offering is conditional; whereas, God’s love is unconditional-He sacrificed the life of His son because of the love He had *God is also Spirit. The devil desires/wants something from you-are you willing to ‘fall down’ on his behalf? Is he/it worthy of your worship?)
Matthew 4:10, “Jesus said to him, “Away with you Satan! For it is written, ‘worship the Lord your God, and serve only him.” (LIVE! The bible says, “’It is written, One does not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”-This means that the devil can only speak death (can’t speak life) so if you don’t follow the devil to death and are willing to be led by the Spirit-the word that comes from the mouth of God…you will LIVE).
Matthew 4:11, “Then the devil left him, and suddenly angels came and waited on him.” (why would/did the angels wait on Jesus/you? Maybe, the angels were waiting to see if Jesus/you would follow the devil (to death)? After you have been offered life and persuade the devil of it…he will leave…but the devil/tempter is persistent and will come back to try to lead you…but it/he can’t if you don’t follow…Consider, that you and the devil/tempter are dancing partners…take the lead! Sometimes you can persuade the devil-the spirit of darkness to accept life…but this can’t be if you are following when you should be leading in the dance…if you lead, the devil will be back to dance with you again-you just have to persuade him/it on the dance floor. Lol, if you can’t dance, don’t worry… let the Spirit of God lead you…follow (the Spirit) and then lead (the tempter)…be a witness to life and offer life to death…
To persuade or to be persuaded…that is a choice, not a question.