Temptation

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BIBLE PASSAGE – Matthew 4.1-11

Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. After fasting for forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. The tempter came to him and said, ‘If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.’

Jesus answered, ‘It is written: “Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.”’

Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the highest point of the temple. ‘If you are the Son of God,’ he said, ‘throw yourself down. For it is written:

‘“He will command his angels concerning you,
    and they will lift you up in their hands,
    so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.”’

Jesus answered him, ‘It is also written: “Do not put the Lord your God to the test.”’

Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendour. ‘All this I will give you,’ he said, ‘if you will bow down and worship me.’

Jesus said to him, ‘Away from me, Satan! For it is written: “Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.”’ Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.

Matthew 4.1-11, NIV

Now temptation is sometimes very hard to resist, especially if we’re talking about the opposite sex, or lust or even money! But temptation is more than this, there are loads of ways we can be tempted. There are lots of small and big things that can tempt us – whether it’s taking a pen from school, or not working your full day at your job!

What ways can people be tempted? List as many as you can without going into detail – these are listed just as warnings for us.

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Jesus was tested by Satan in 3 ways. What were they and how did Jesus respond? Try and summarise what each temptation was and what Jesus said…

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Notice that the Holy Spirit led Jesus into the desert to be tempted! But the Bible says we should ‘lead us not into temptation’. So what was happening here? God doesn’t lead us into temptation – but he will sometimes allow us to be in situations where he tests us. A test is often the way to a promotion and a sign that God cares for us!

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God was in control. God does not tempt us, nor can God be tempted. Read James 1.13 and see what it says there. (An Old Testament character who went through a testing time was Job. Read Job 1 to see how it all started)

Jesus knew his Bible and used it as a weapon! He didn’t try to argue with satan but used the Word of God. This is often our best defence when satan attacks us or when people around attack the Christian faith. Knowing the Bible strengthens you and it acts like a wall of protection around you – a bit like a firewall.

Jesus was tempted when he was hungry, think about times when you are most likely to be tempted. Ask God for help and protection and make a choice ahead of time that you won’t do what’s wrong.

Why do you think God allowed Jesus to be tempted? (Hebrews 2.18, Hebrews 4.14-16)

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Why would God allow you to be tempted? (See Romans 5.1-5 & James 1.12)

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Why does temptation exist at all? (See James 1.14-15)

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How can we stand up against temptation? 

Read 1 Corinthians 10.13 and Luke 22.39-46) and write down the 2 main points

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