Matthew 4



The first temptation, v.3-4.   God’s ideal of physical humanity.

  • Satan suggests that God should not let Him be hungry. Jesus’ answer – De.8:1-6; Ps.119:11.
  • Satan makes an organized and systematic attack upon the Man in all areas of His life.
  • Satan makes an appeal to the physical nature – bread.
  • He was a real man, yet even though He was Superior, He was hungry.
  • Man’s humanity physically is temporary and yet man is the highest, finest and final act of God’s creation.

The second temptation, v.5-7.  God’s ideal of spiritual humanity.

  • Satan dares Jesus to prove one of God’s promises and misquotes Ps.91:11-12. Jesus’ answer – De.6:16.
  • Satan twists scripture. Sometimes carnal Christians do the same.  We must keep scripture in its context and meet the conditions laid down.
  • Deliberate disobedience is an invitation for chastening.
  • Satan makes an appeal to the spiritual nature – trust in God.
  • The spiritual man is conscious of God.
  • The spiritual man seeks to know the will of God.
  • The spiritual man is submissive to spiritual order.
  • The spiritual man yields to God’s law.
  • Spirituality is supreme and abiding over the physical.

The third temptation, v.8-10.  God’s ideal for a servant.

  • Satan is the prince of this world [Jn.14:30] and is permitted to have a certain amount of control.
  • The kingdoms of this world are promised to Christ [Ps.2:6-9] but He had to die on the cross to gain this kingdom. Satan was trying to tempt Him away from the cross.  Jesus’ answer – De.6:13.
  • Satan makes an appeal to the secular nature (vocational) – kingdoms of the world.
  • God’s Servant was born to serve.
  • Service follows our worship.
  • Temptation attacks the service (vocational) part of His life.
  • An imperfect being cannot demand our loyalty. He could not bow down to the devil nor can we.
  • We cannot bow down to anything other than perfection.
  • If we worship God, we live for Him and obey Him. We worship who we serve.


  • There was nothing in Him that would respond to evil.
  • Even when standing in His virtue there was the infirmity of hunger.
  • Infirmity is not sin. Hunger is a sign of weakened strength and the need of sustenance.
  • Hunger is not wrong; bread is not improper, but He would not act independently of the Father’s will (His Word).
  • He didn’t do anything spectacular when tempted.
  • He had a passion to complete His service.


  • He always answered the temptation as a Man, not as Deity.
  • His victory was as a Man with God.
  • His victory was as a Man for man.

The King is undefeated in His personal life, His character and His service.


The last Adam:

  • The first Adam was tempted in a beautiful garden; the last Adam (Christ) in a lonely wilderness.
  • The first Adam was tempted when he was at his best; the last Adam (Christ) when He was hungry.
  • The first Adam was the king of the old creation; the last Adam (Christ) is the King of a New creation [2Cor.5:17].
  • The first Adam sinned and lost dominion [Heb.2:6-9]; the last Adam (Christ) obeyed and regained what was lost [Rom.5:12-21].
  • The first Adam was defeated and brought death; the last Adam (Christ) was victorious and brought life.

The Son of David:

  • David and Christ were both from Bethlehem.
  • David and Christ were both chosen and anointed by God.
  • David and Christ were both exiles and persecuted before being crowned.
  • David and Israel dealt with Goliath for 40 days.  Christ dealt with Satan for 40 days.
  • David used 1 stone out of 5.  Christ used 1 book (Deuteronomy) out of 5 (Pentatuch).
  • David defeated the strong man Goliath.  Christ defeated the strong Satan [Mat.12:22-30].

The Angels:

  1. Announced Jesus’ birth.
  2. Reassured Joseph.
  3. Made Jesus’ name known.
  4. Announced Jesus’ birth to the shepherds.
  5. Protected Jesus by sending His family to Egypt.
  6. Ministered to Him after His temptation.
  7. Ministered to Him in Gethsemane.


There is a one-year gap between verse 11 and verse 12.  Some of the events during this time are recorded in John’s Gospel…

  • Jesus was in the area where He was baptized for at least three days following.
  • The first group of disciples is identified.
  • The miracle in Cana of Galilee took place.
  • The first cleansing of the temple took place as an official presentation of the King.
  • The meeting with Nicodemus took place.
  • John continued baptizing and Jesus (through His disciples) baptized also.
  • John’s arrest introduced His official ministry as King.


  • Capernaum had often been overrun by Assyrians and was considered on the fringe of things and not a good place to live (the shadow of death).
  • The Lord moves to be with the despised and helpless people in the region of death and darkness that the scripture would be fulfilled.
  • The light of love and truth came into that dark place.
  • Darkness was in the hearts.

SELECTED MEN, v.18-22.

  • He called four men to service and work.
  • His call came with simplicity. It was not hard to understand.
  • He used them in the capacity they had developed before He called them (“fishers”).
  • These called men answered “straightway”.
  • The honorable thing to do when called by the Lord is to obey the Lord.
  • Stay doing what you are doing (nets) until the Lord calls.


  • He went everywhere teaching, preaching and healing.
    1. Teaching: His concern for their understanding.
    2. Preaching: His concern for their commitment.
    3. Healing: His concern for their wholeness.
  • His fame went throughout Syria.
  • They brought unto Him – people with problems.
  • He healed them.
  • There followed Him great multitudes.

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