James 5:11 (MSG)
10-11 Take the old prophets as your mentors. They put up with anything, went through everything, and never once quit, all the time honoring God. What a gift life is to those who stay the course! You’ve heard, of course, of Job’s staying power, and you know how God brought it all together for him at the end. That’s because God cares, cares right down to the last detail.
Matthew 4:1-15 (NIV)
Jesus Is Tested in the Wilderness
1 Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2 After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. 3 The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”
4 Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”
5 Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. 6 “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written:
“‘He will command his angels concerning you,
and they will lift you up in their hands,
so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’”
7 Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’[d]”
8 Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. 9 “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.”
10 Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’”
11 Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.
A couple of tests. Why in the world would God give a couple of tests? He knows how it turns out because He isn’t constrained by a linear time scale, so why bother? Maybe the test wasn’t for Him, or for those He tested, but for us.
What kind of a man was Job that he never walked from God? I wonder how hangry Christ was after not eating for 40 days and nights. Stamina, strength, perseverance and faith. Faith that was never wavering and certainly never broke. Faith that never broke. Faith like it should be. Faith that was modeled for us. Satan will come and tweek us, nip at our heels, maybe launch a full scale attack. Most of the time he won’t bother us because we aren’t making enough of a difference for Christ in the world to bother with.
We take our small problems and get angry at God. Have we been tested by Satan? Yes, some of us have been, some of us are being and some of us only think we have been. I don’t believe many of us have been through what Job and Christ went through. Yet how we rail against God, Christ and the Holy Spirit. Criminee.
We ought to be hangry for Christ, for God, for the Holy Spirit like Christ and Job were.
We have been shown what is good, we have been shown what God is made of, we know what His love is, we can wear the full armor of God – if we choose to – “for my Father has given them to me, and he is more powerful than anyone else. No one can snatch them from the Father’s hand.” John 10:29 (NLT)