BIBLICAL INSIGHTS in 500 words
JESUS: The Satan Slayer
Matthew 4:1-11; Hebrews 2:14-15
1-Jesus is God’s Word. To meet the temptations (Matthew 4:1-11) of the devil, Jesus relied on the Word of God. Three times the devil tested, and three times Jesus quoted from the book of Deuteronomy. Deuteronomy 6:13 and 6:16 are instructions given to Israel as they enter the Promised Land (Deut. 6:1-25). Jesus was bringing the promise of God into reality.
The third quotation is in Deuteronomy 8:3, the covenant calling. God reminds the people how he aided and taught them in the wilderness:
Remember how the Lord your God led you all the way in the wilderness these forty years, to humble and test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands . . . to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord (Deut. 8:2-3).
Jesus fulfills God’s promise: “man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord” (Deut. 8:3, Matthew 4:4). In the Spirit of Jesus we experience, understand, and apply God’s Word.
2-Jesus Battles Satan. The temptation in the desert depicts one moment in a long battle. “The devil left him for a more opportune time” (Luke 4:13). The conflict between the Son of God and the Prince of this World (John 12:31; 14:30; 16:11) stretched across the life and ministry of Jesus and would culminate on the cross.
Satan stands behind Herod and his attempt to destroy the infant, Jesus (Matthew 3:16-18). God’s Suffering Servant took on and healed “many who were demon-possessed . . . This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah: “He took up our infirmities and bore our diseases” (Matthew 8:16-17). Peter echoed the temptations of the devil by trying to divert him from the cross: Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. “Never, Lord!” he said. “This shall never happen to you!” 23 Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan” (Matthew 16:23).
3-Jesus Announces Victory. At the temptation Satan claimed he possessed “all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor” (Matthew 4:8). Following the cross and resurrection Jesus announced, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me’” (Matthew 28:18).
Jesus is the Satan Slayer. The battle continues but the victory is assured. The book of Hebrews explains the victory of Christ over Satan: “Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil— and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death” (Hebrews 2:14-15).