TEMPTED AS WE ARE: Stones to Bread

TEMPTED AS WE ARE: Stones to Bread

Matthew 4:1-4

The gospels do not fall into the literary category of ‘biography’ familiar to many readers today. Rather than trying to simply portray Jesus’ identity through their composition of his story, the highly selective accounts of the gospel writers seek to cultivate belief in their readers (cf. John 20:30-31; 21:25). When one learns to believe in Jesus, they look to him as “an example” to follow (John 13:15). With that focus in mind, this lesson introduces a series considering the temptations that both Matthew and Luke place at the beginning of Jesus’ ministry (Matthew 4:1-11; Luke 4:1-13). The amount of space dedicated to his temptations and how the text presents them indicate their significance. In addition to helping readers understand his identity, Jesus’ temptations also provide insight into the temptations we all experience. This lesson explores the first temptation Satan used to test Jesus – prioritize self-gratification over obedience – and the lessons it offers us.