Last time, I wrote about how Satan uses a works mentality to capture you in a cycle of shame. Doing justice out of love feels great! It really does! But if you do justice to make yourself appear worthy, you’ll be disappointed in how you feel. If you feed hungry families or help put in a well in so you can get your picture in the paper, you’re not going to feel very good when you’re done.
Jesus showed us how to talk to Satan. Remember what happened after He fasted for forty days and forty nights? He was hungry, man! Jesus was hungry. And Satan tempted Him. Satan kept trying to see if Jesus would give a vote to sin. But Jesus said, “You don’t understand. I’m holy and righteous. Your tricks won’t work. You have no shot with me! You can tempt me all you want, but I am holy and righteous. Whatever comes out of my mouth is from my Father.” And that, as you know, was scripture.
Satan even tried to offer what he thought was a huge bribe. He said to Jesus, “I’ll give you control of the Earth and everything in it!” But Jesus said, “My God is not of this world. This world here, this little planet, don’t you know that we’re smaller than the stars? This world can’t even compare!”
Jesus said to Satan, “Time out! I was there when everything was created. You’re offering me the Earth? It’s like handing me a pebble of sand and saying, ‘Here, control this.’ Beat it, Satan. I already have that. I control stars! So what makes you think I need to control just one planet? What makes you think I’m going to give up everything for Earth? I’m holy and righteous!”
It’s almost like Jesus looked at Satan and said, “You’re an idiot.”
And that’s what holy and righteous people do. The Bible says we are maturing every day, to get into the glory of God. Every day, God is molding us to make us more mature. He is molding us so that we can become like Jesus.
I’m not saying we’ll ever get to the point where we are perfect. It won’t happen until Jesus comes. But He’s maturing me and maturing you, and every day He is bringing us closer to that point. It’s going to get easier and easier to look at Satan and say, “You idiot. You actually think that’s going to work with me? I’m holy. And I’m righteous. That’s my identity. You don’t have any control over me here.”
I believe my holy and righteous identity in Christ will eventually reach a point where I rarely give in. I won’t even give a vote to sin anymore. I’ll say to Satan, “You don’t have a voice here. Beat it!”
See you Thursday.