May 15 I Saturday
2 Kings 22-23
“Each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.” —James 1:14-15
The devil tried to tempt Jesus three times. The first temptation was the lust of the flesh––Jesus’s hunger, to which Jesus did not succumb. The second temptation was the lust of the eyes, where the devil led Jesus up to a high place and showed Him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. The devil said, “I will give You all their authority and splendour; it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. If You worship me, it will all be Yours” (Luke 4:6-7). It is interesting that the devil tried to tempt Jesus with this offer, as the devil does not have authority to give Jesus anything. But then again, the devil is a liar and cannot be trusted.
The lust of the eyes is the attraction of the senses where we will pay whatever cost to possess the item. This is why one of the Ten Commandments says, “You shall not covet...” (Exodus 20:17). Covetousness is looking at something and being willing to do whatever it takes to get it. Advertisers know the power of the lust of the eyes. All they have to do is simply flash an image on a screen for it to register in our mind that associates what they are selling with something pleasurable and able to bring us fulfillment.
The third temptation was the pride of life. This time, the devil led Jesus to the highest point of the temple, saying, “If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down from here. For it is written: ‘He will command His angels concerning you to guard you carefully; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone’” (Luke 4:9-11). In other words, “If You are the Son of God, how come nobody knows? Jump off the temple and when the angels catch You, then word will spread around like wildfire. Then You will be somebody.” The devil was appealing to Jesus’s pride, challenging His ego.
Pride is one of the original sins. When God created His angelic beings, He made a host of angels. One of the angels was Lucifer, whose name means “the Morning Star.” He was the most beautiful of all angels, but he became proud and rebelled against God on account of his own beauty. Lucifer, who became known as the devil, was thrown down from heaven, along with a third of the angels.
The lust of our eyes and our pride can cause us to sin. May our eyes ever be fixed upon God and our hearts be in a posture of humility.
Prayer: Beautiful Lord, guide my eyes that they may ever be fixed upon You and help my heart be in a posture of humility before You. Thank You, Lord.