When the devil had finished every temptation tempting Jesus *, he left Him until the next opportunity came.Luke 4:9-13
This is Luke’s last comment on the temptations of Jesus. This is my 17th Gem on the temptations of Christ. I didn’t imagine I would do so many Gems on this passage but then it warrants a thorough coverage as well. There have been other things I could have commented on but chose to let slip by. I have decided today that I would leave that last verse and the overall view to you for the moment. Time for you to do what I normally do at the end of a book – i.e. Give you time to look back in retrospect and see the whole thing as well as dealing with this last verse before we move on. Do you see anything else you feel deserves our attention? Notice I said “our” attention. Not just mine. I am not doing this solely for you. I am doing it for me but you are tagging along. I am very pleased that in this section of Luke (Chapter 4) many more of you have come alive and realized that you can go deeper in Scripture than ever you imagined. The Bible is way deeper than you thought. I have told you before of my Greek professor who spent 5 years studying the Gospel John followed by 3 years studying Chapter One followed by two further years studying the prologue – John 1:1-18. Basically when it comes to the Bible you can do that with any part of it. It is that deep. Would we expect any different? As I used to tell people in the God’s Awesome Book seminar:
- “God is Awesome, wouldn’t we expect His Book to be awesome too?”
- “Come with Great Expectations!”
- “Be prepared to lose your socks.” i.e. Having your socks blown off.
- “When it comes to the things of God it is best that we wear a seat belt. Selt belts should be compulsory on church seats. Come to church: belt up.”
Yet how sad that for so many of us the excitement has rubbed off. We have been dulled or lulled into a sense of complacency by the numbing sedative of routine. Don’t ever approach God from the view of routine. It is not a wise thing to do with Him who says “Behold I make all things new.”
I am really looking forward to one particularly part of Luke where I have found major treasure. I am busting to share it with you. But in the meantime, in between now and when we arrive at that point, I expect to find lots more treasure. I think I need to add something at this point in my desire to kick start you to passion for the Word of God. I share “Gems” with you. I pluck out the bits that I see as noteworthy. The shining sparkling elements that I note along our journey. Like a tour guide. “On the left coming up is the place where Jesus . . . ” “You can see at this point here on the right that Luke . . . ” But I am NOT putting the pieces together for you. I am doing that for myself in my own time and in my ponderings. I shared with our cell group on Thursday night some of the things I have been putting together. I am preaching on some of that tomorrow. Stepping back and seeing where the pieces fit and then putting the details together. Learn to understand the Bible as a whole. That is also what I am doing in Deeper Bible. All these pieces go together. The big picture, the little details all fit together to make up the whole. One of the people at home group Thursday made the comment that he has been following Gems, he has been following Deeper Bible, he is with me for training for Deeper Bible teachers. He effectively said (not a quote) – I have read all the details you have shared in Gems . I have heard what you say in Deeper Bible. Now I see there is so much more when you put it all together. Exactly!
Wow thank you Lord. Thanks for the privilege.
All that to say – put it all together. Look at the details. Look at the big picture. Do all you can to understand it and then put it all together.
My suggestion to you now is to deal with this last verse. See what there is in it that is worthy of study and then go back and read the whole. In this case the Temptations of Christ. See what you find. Tell me about it. Search for yourself as to what elements of the text are worthy of comment. Tell me the remaining parts of Luke’s coverage of the Temptations you think I should Gem for you. I will respond accordingly. Oh that is not to say I will cover all that all of you suggest. That would be futile and boring. But I will pick up the trending topics. You know know what I mean I am sure. Especially you Twitter users. Those suggestions or focus topics that numbers of you suggest and agree on. I will respond to those.
I will do what I am planning to do for the next level of Deeper Bible as well. I will give you the time to do it for yourself. Either now or when you get to it. Some of you are working through Gems but you are weeks behind because you are doing it at your pace. That is good; make it work for you. I plan to give you today and tomorrow to do that and I will come back on Monday with your comments and we will go from there. I told you Gems were “live” and online. Give me your comment. Some of you may be thinking “Ian, you have spent 17 Gems already on the Temptations. Just move on or we will never finish Luke.” “Jesus will come back before you finish Luke, Ian.”
So be it.
Above all have fun.
Blessed is he who has learned to laugh at himself for he shall never cease to be entertained.Ian Vail
The most influential person who will talk to you all day, is you. So, you should be very careful what you say to you.Zig Ziglar
I not only use all the brains that I have, but all that I can borrow.Woodrow Wilson
Aim high, even if you miss you’ll get better than just aiming low.Jeffrey Rachmat
I would rather let my heart be without words than my words be without heart in my worship.Sidney Mohede