E-votional - The Transformation
March 1 - 7, 2004


The Devil, playing on his hunger, gave the first test: “Since you’re God’s Son, command this stone to turn into a loaf of bread.” ... Jesus answered by quoting Deuteronomy: “It takes more than bread to really live.” Jesus refused, again backing his refusal with Deuteronomy: “Worship the Lord your God and only the Lord your God. Serve him with absolute single-heartedness.”

Luke 4:3,4,8 (The Message)


I look at the side of the Coke machine. Instead of seeing the solid red which makes up the base color of the machine, I see temptation. There is a picture of a Coke and it looks as if it has just come out of a cooler filled with ice. It is suggestive. Every 15 minutes we see suggestive programming in the form of commercials. Along the freeways, we see billboards tempting us to respond to what they have to offer. Temptation is in every aspect of our life. From people stirring up conflict to those who lure you into thinking selfishly, we will always have temptation in our life.

Hear the Good News, not only is God going to keep what we can not handle from us, but we have, at our fingertips the foundational resource which will help us in the midst of temptation. Two words, presence and scripture. First, God's presence is with us, it is who He is and what He is about. It is that same presence which tempts, yes, tempts us to draw closer to Him. We know how to deal with the temptations, the contests, through an understanding of Scripture. AS we look at the passage above there are a couple of observations we must come to realize. Temptations come our way from three directions. Physically, we are faced with temptations. Physically there will be good contests and bad temptations, but as we understand who we are and who's we are, when we understand there are not physical short-cuts, our response to those temptations and challenges are much clearer. Emotionally, we are challenged each day, but we are not called to selfishness, rather selflessness and servitude. We area people who need relationships, though they need to be healthy ones. Emotionally, we certainly have needs, but there is a right and a wrong way to meet these needs. We are inundated by Spiritual temptations. There are so many "get spiritual quick" schemes, packaged nice and neat, but lacking a foundation for our personal as well as collective faith development. There are no short-cuts to success or accomplishment. With God, there is a personal and real experience fostered by a real and healthy relationship. As Jesus was in the wilderness, he was faced with temptation on these three levels. To each contest, Jesus had The Answer. We must be ready to today, each day in the same manner.


   Our Father, Who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. They will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us for our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for Thine is the Kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.

Grace & Peace

David Banks
Jewett United Methodist Church
PO Box 254
Jewett, TX 75846
(903) 626-4003


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