[Two Kinds of Wisdom] Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom.
To begin, begin.
It is not the voice that commands the story; it is the ear.
And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.
Jesus: Both Man and God
1 Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. ￼ 2 And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. ￼ 3 And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.” ￼ 4 But he answered, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”
5 Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple ￼ 6 and said 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, lest you strike your foot against a stone.’”
7 Jesus said to him, “Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’” ￼ 8 Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. ￼ 9 And he said to him, “All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.” ￼ 10 Then Jesus said to him, “Be gone, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your Godand him only shall you serve.’”
11 Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him.
This passage is very important because it validates both Jesus’ humanity and his deity in that he could be tempted, but was able to resist temptation and never sin. I also think it’s important for us to remember that Jesus was as much a man as he was God. When we’re in the midst of a difficult situation or we’re struggling with sin, it’s easy to feel like Jesus is distant, doesn’t understand us, or has set unrealistic expectations upon us. Even though it doesn’t always make us feel better in the moment, the truth is far from the distant Jesus we may have created in our heads in the midst of our suffering.
Jesus is always near us with his hand outstretched, ready to pick us up. It’s also why he’s given us the Holy Spirit; to give us the comfort and strength that we need to overcome any situation. Even better, Jesus understands what we are going through because he experienced, first hand, life as a man. He has felt the same temptation to sin, experienced the same tumultuous emotions (just look at his time in the Garden of Gethsemane), and felt extreme pain in both the physical and spiritual sense (betrayal by Judas and his crucifixion).
With Jesus’ own struggles in mind, I have always taken comfort in the fact that Jesus knows my struggles not just because he’s all-knowing God, but because he experienced them as a man. Then, I’m able to rejoice because as the Overcomer, he overcame all of man’s weaknesses and proclivity to sin and because he overcame and died on the cross, he became my Redeemer. We too can overcome, just as Jesus did, but not by the strength of our flesh, but by utter reliance on the Holy Spirit to strengthen us and guide us in the midst of our struggles and temptation. Jesus succeeded not because he relied on his flesh, but rather in spite of his humanity because of his deity.
Jesus does set unrealistic expectation upon us if we expect to succeed in our flesh. Our flesh is weak and will fail us. It’s so true, it’s basically a guarantee. Jesus’ expectation that we go and sin no more, is only reasonable through the lens of salvation and our own acknowledgement that we can do nothing on our own and only through Christ who gives us strength. We cannot overcome in our lives until we stop trying and start letting Jesus guide our lives.
The next time you’re struggling, take comfort from this verse:
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.
We adore chaos because we love to produce order.
[Imitating Christ’s Humility] Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind.