Ignore the Side Issues

When Satan offered Jesus “all the kingdoms of the world” (Matthew 4:8-9), Jesus apparently didn’t give it the slightest consideration. And I find it fascinating that Jesus didn’t even question whether the devil had the authority or the ability to make such an offer. He didn’t enter into a dialogue about the idea that was being presented.

I mean, I think that if it was me – I’m very much the inquisitive type and one who has a tendency to get hung up on technicalities – I think there’s a good chance I may have responded with something like, “Well, that certainly is an interesting offer, but are all those kingdoms really yours to give?”

Jesus apparently never went down that road at all. Instead, He looked at the real issue: worshiping the devil.

And, He went right to the heart of the matter: God’s people are supposed to worship and serve only the Lord.

The response became easy by recognizing the real issue. He didn’t need to wonder or ponder. The answer was obvious. Worship the devil? No way!

And, just as He did on the previous temptations, He proclaimed the truth of God’s Word. “It is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve.’” (Matthew 4:10) Declaring the Word of God was how Jesus handled those types of issues, and it’s how you and I should, too.

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