Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after He had fasted for forty days and forty nights, He then became hungry. And the tempter came and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.” But He answered and said, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes out of the mouth of God.’”
Then the devil *took Him along into the holy city and had Him stand on the pinnacle of the temple, and he said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down; for it is written:
‘He will give His angels orders concerning You’;
‘On their hands they will lift You up,
So that You do not strike Your foot against a stone.’”
Jesus said to him, “On the other hand, it is written: ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’”
Again, the devil *took Him along to a very high mountain and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory; and he said to Him, “All these things I will give You, if You fall down and worship me.” Then Jesus *said to him, “Go away, Satan! For it is written: ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and serve Him only.’” Then the devil *left Him; and behold, angels came and began to serve Him.
The last temptation we read about is on prosperity. Indeed there are those believers whom God has chosen to be prosperous with. But if you read on in the book of Acts, of the underlying stories in Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians and Thessalonians you understand what that kind of prosperity was granted for. It was intended to aid the saints in the work of the ministry. Relieving physical burdens so that the Spiritual would flourish.
It doesn't take much wealth to sew the seeds of greed. We can be greedy with a little or with much.
But realize the other themes of those books. Persecution. The truth of the real Church is that since the world hated Jesus it would hate the true Church too.
In our world today there's "churches" that the world doesn't hate.
These pseudo-churches preach acceptance of the sins of the world. So it's obvious Satan doesn't care about them. Essentially they are what Jesus called one such place in the letters to the Churches in the book of Revelation. A synagogue of Satan.
This world is turning into Sodom and Gehmorrah on steroids. Inventing new kinds of atrocities against the flesh likely unheard of in those cities.
Today the world is attempting to force acceptance of sexual sins as normal behavior.
The true Church is under fire for its lack of acceptance of this ideology.
Jesus said they hated Me they will hate you for standing in the truth of God.
This world's methods of hate include everything from verbal abuse to murder to shut up Christian principles from growing in the world.
God says in the Bible as well, in James 4:4 "You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God."
It's been something that God's had me write a lot about since beginning this blog. Idolatry. People justifying their friendship with the world in what they do, who and what they place their joy and passion with that belongs to God.
Great examples are sports, movies, worldly causes, even excessive things such as animal rights. Animals have greater rights than the unborn in this world. Trees and vegetation have more rights than unborn children. Legislation has been passed in many places that equate an unborn child as the same as bodily waste. Even up to the point of birth a child's life can be taken.
Sports. Yes sports. Even with the NFL coming out to say that Sundays used to belong to the Church, but now it belongs to them, the Church did and said nothing.
For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because that which is known of God is revealed in them, for God revealed it to them. For the invisible things of him since the creation of the world are clearly seen, being perceived through the things that are made, even his everlasting power and divinity, that they may be without excuse. Because knowing God, they didn’t glorify him as God, and didn’t give thanks, but became vain in their reasoning, and their senseless heart was darkened.
Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and traded the glory of the incorruptible God for the likeness of an image of corruptible man, and of birds, four-footed animals, and creeping things.
We live in that time, that time that Jesus was asking this question: Would He even find the Faith when He returns?
Lastly...this can apply to those who claim to be churches too:
When they had set a day for Paul, people came to him at his lodging in large numbers; and he was explaining to them by solemnly testifying about the kingdom of God and trying to persuade them concerning Jesus, from both the Law of Moses and from the Prophets, from morning until evening. Some were being persuaded by the things said by Paul, but others would not believe. And when they disagreed with one another, they began leaving after Paul said one parting statement: “The Holy Spirit rightly spoke through Isaiah the prophet to your fathers, saying,
‘Go to this people and say,
“You will keep on hearing, and will not understand;
And you will keep on seeing, and will not perceive;
For the hearts of this people have become insensitive,
And with their ears they hardly hear,
And they have closed their eyes;
Otherwise they might see with their eyes,
And hear with their ears,
And understand with their heart and return,
And I would heal them.”’
Therefore, let it be known to you that this salvation of God has been sent to the Gentiles; they will also listen.”
And here in 2 Timothy 4:3-4 "For the time will come when they will not tolerate sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance with their own desires, and they will turn their ears away from the truth and will turn aside to myths."
Are you among those who have been hearing but not understanding?
Are you among those seeing but not perceiving?
Is your heart insensitive?
Time is running out to do something about it.
Spiritual reality is we are in a war, we are behind enemy lines. We are aliens in a foreign country. We have daily battles with the enemy of God. Deception is his trade. His primary weapon. He always starts small and adds onto his deceptive practices in order to get you to believe his lies as truth.
God may indeed bless you, but realize as well God may allow you to be blessed to see what you would do with such a blessing. For many of us if we are being real, we would admit what the Scriptures point to. That if we were among those living in prosperity all the time, we would indeed fall away from God. We would repeat the sins of Israel and not rely on God.
Look at your life. Look at where you have placed your ideals. Look at what you are passionate about. It's for you to pray that your eyes be opened, that your ears would be opened, that you would turn and be healed.