Then the devil took Him to Jerusalem, to the highest point of the Temple, and said, “If You are the Son of God, jump off! (throw yourself down) For the Scriptures say, ‘He will order His angels to protect and guard you [in all your ways]. And they will hold you up with their hands so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.'” [Ps 91:11-12] Jesus responded, “The Scriptures also say, ‘You must not test the LORD your God.'” [Deut 6:16]
Did you notice something interesting? “in all your ways” has been omitted in satan’s quote.
Why am I not surprised? It’s almost to be expected don’t you think? That the enemy would misquote Scripture. No surprise there.
Now let’s read the context of the passages.
Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty. This I declare about the LORD: He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; He is my God, and I trust Him. For He will rescue you from every trap and protect you from deadly disease. He will cover you with His feathers. He will shelter you with His wings. His faithful promises are your armour and protection. Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night, nor the arrow that flies in the day. Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness, nor the disaster that strikes at midday. Though a thousand fall at your side, though ten thousand are dying around you, these evils will not touch you. Just open your eyes, and see how the wicked are punished. If you make the LORD your refuge, if you make the Most High your shelter, no evil will conquer you; no plague will come near your home. For He will order His angels to protect you in all your ways They will hold you up with their hands so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone. You will trample upon lions and cobras; you will crush fierce lions and serpents under your feet! The LORD says, “I will rescue those who love Me. I will protect those who trust in My name. When they call on Me, I will answer; I will be with them in trouble. I will rescue and honou r them. I will reward them with a long life and give them My salvation.”
“These are the commands, decrees, and regulations that the LORD your God commanded me to teach you. You must obey them in the land you are about to enter and occupy, and you and your children and grandchildren must fear the LORD your God as long as you live. If you obey all His decrees and commands, you will enjoy a long life. Listen closely, Israel, and be careful to obey. Then all will go well with you, and you will have many children in the land flowing with milk and honey, just as the LORD, the God of your ancestors, promised you. “Listen, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD alone. And you must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. The LORD your God will soon bring you into the land He swore to give you when He made a vow to your ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. It is a land with large, prosperous cities that you did not build. The houses will be richly stocked with goods you did not produce. You will draw water from cisterns you did not dig, and you will eat from vineyards and olive trees you did not plant. When you have eaten your fill in this land, be careful not to forget the LORD, who rescued you from slavery in the land of Egypt. You must fear the LORD your God and serve Him. When you take an oath, you must use only His name. “You must not worship any of the gods of neighbouring nations, for the LORD your God, who lives among you, is a jealous God. His anger will flare up against you, and He will wipe you from the face of the earth. You must not test the LORD your God as you did when you complained at Massah. You must diligently obey the commands of the LORD your God—all the laws and decrees He has given you. Do what is right and good in the LORD’s sight, so all will go well with you. Then you will enter and occupy the good land that the LORD swore to give your ancestors. You will drive out all the enemies living in the land, just as the LORD said you would. “In the future your children will ask you, ‘What is the meaning of these laws, decrees, and regulations that the LORD our God has commanded us to obey?’ “Then you must tell them, ‘We were Pharaoh’s slaves in Egypt, but the LORD brought us out of Egypt with His strong hand. The LORD did miraculous signs and wonders before our eyes, dealing terrifying blows against Egypt and Pharaoh and all his people. He brought us out of Egypt so He could give us this land He had sworn to give our ancestors. And the LORD our God commanded us to obey all these decrees and to fear Him so He can continue to bless us and preserve our lives, as He has done to this day. For we will be counted as righteous when we obey all the commands the LORD our God has given us.’
Let’s investigate the part that satan conveniently left out:
“in ALL your ways“
Ways – דּרך (derek) a road, figuratively a course of life or mode of action, conversation, custom, (life) journey, manner, highway, pathway
The concept is far more that the NLT translation “Whenever you go” – at one particular time. This is talking about a life style, a life journey and way of life you mode or manner of operation. Your basic operating system.
Do you see how incongruent would be for Jesus to submit and test God even for a nano second. It would cut across His life direction. Can you see in context that is what the whole of Psalm 91 is talking about and that is what the whole of Deuteronomy is meaning. To slip out from the basic operating system for even a moment is to no longer be operating in that way.
The devils taunt to just throw yourself down into the ravine and see what He (God the Father) does for you, falls on deaf ears with Jesus. Why would He? There is NO REASON. The “Trust” spoken of in Psalm 91 holds Him firm. There is no need to test it. We are to live in the shelter of the MOST HIGH. In point of fact, to test it is to doubt it. To make Him our refuge; to make Him our shelter infers a life long process. Note the occurrence of the His vow and our oath. This action and life style is all premised on the Covenant He has sworn to uphold. A covenant normally requires two parties – His Vow and our oath but in this case His Vow will hold even when our oath doesn’t. Wow this covenant is on-going life long COMMITMENT.
Can you see why Jesus would not be tempted for a moment?
Do you understand that you shouldn’t either?
Can you see why it is important to took at the whole context of the quote and not just the one line clipped from the context?
Did Jesus know the whole passage? I don’t even need to bother to answer that. He is the living word. The Word of God incarnate.
Did satan know what he was doing when he left out “in all your ways”? To leave it in would have blown his cover and destroyed his temptation merely by including the context.
I don’t intend to make any more comment but you may need to do some more pondering.
Read the third temptation again in the context of Psalm 91 and Deuteronomy 6 and see how easily it is disarmed and made toothless.
A text without a context is a pretext.Ian Vail
Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.Benjamin Franklin
He is no fool who gives up what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.Jim Elliot
Success is going from failure to failure without any loss of enthusiasm.Winston Churchill
You may not always know the details of your journey or clearly see where the trail is leading, but God will always give you enough light to take the next step.Anon
Find a purpose in life so big it will challenge every capacity to be at your best.Donald McKay
The best translation is when you translate the Word of God into your daily life. You ought to be a living Bible.Rick Warren
God’s goal is not our comfort; it’s producing in us the character of Christ so the world will be drawn to Him.Ian Vail
I gave you eight quotes this morning because this is the 800th Gem.