“Then was JESUS led up of the SPIRIT into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.” Matthew 4: 1
It is been given to mankind to chose between LIFE and DEATH; GOOD and EVIL. Our destinations lie in the choice that we make. But there is a common saying that GOD would never tempt you but HE would surely test . . . and that HE tests so that by passing the test, HE would take us to the next stage our relationship and work with HIM and devil tempts because he desires that we end in doom as HE will be.
I found out that temptation is a means of enticing someone to do the wrong thing by promise of pleasure or gain; to make someone do what he would not do naturally. And test is a way of examining or observing someone critically.
What we normally regards as tests from GOD and temptations from satan are actually the same most of the times but each party with different intentions entirely: GOD’s desire for any critical scenario is to know if we are still on the path of righteousness but all the devil desires is that we fail and end up in damnation.
JESUS, WHO is also GOD, was led by the SPIRIT to be tempted by the devil. GOD’s desire for JESUS was to fast for forty days and nights so as to prepare HIM for the journey ahead but the devil’s goal is to HIM fail by succumbing to his authority even at the very beginning of HIS ministry.
GOD knew the serpent was going to lure Adam and Eve. HE created all anyways so HE knew what was going to happen even before time but HE allowed it to know Adam’s response to the devil’s allurements.
The case of Job should be a direct example of GOD’s test and devil’s temptation. GOD was hoping that job would never deny and all devil wanted to do was to prove HIM wrong. GOD wanted to know Job’s priority: was it HIM or his wealth and his beautiful family HE had blessed him with but devil was claiming that the only reason Job was faithful was because of the same wealth and beautiful family.
As we always proclaim that GOD would not test someone beyond his/her capacity in HIM, I also say that whenever devil is tempting the children of GOD, grace to overcome these temptations abounds much more. For there are trees in the Garden of Eden including the Tree of Life that Adam and Eve could have eaten and live forever in GOD’s presence without going near the tree of good and evil.
In summary, GOD would not let the devil tempt us beyond our capability but HIS test may include allowing the devil’s temptation. HE wants to know the state of our hearts and how well we are making use of the Grace made available to us in trying times.
Abraham, Joseph, Daniel were all tested/tempted at some points in their lives but they were not swayed away by the devil because of their consciousness of the presence and greatness of GOD on high.
Abraham would not cherish Isaac more than the ONE that gifted him with Isaac; Joseph would not sin against GOD by giving in to Potiphar’s wife’s sexual enticement garnished with wealth benefits; and Daniel would not defile the Temple of GOD (his Body) with the ”exotic cuisines” of Babylon. They all had choices to make and that was what made their temptations tests before GOD.
* So when temptation surfaces, it means that GOD allows it so that HIS glory can be revealed through the Grace HE has made available for us to overcome the same temptation.
Peace To The Wise!