1. The Spirit which fills Jesus at his Baptism does not lead him to temptation but only helps him to overcome temptation. As we read in James 1: 13, no temptation comes from God. Every temptation comes only from the Evil one.
2. Jesus’ fasting is not a penitential fast but symbolic of fullness of the Spirit and of his helplessness, contingency and humbling of self before the Almighty God who gives and sustains life.
3. The Satan tempts Jesus Christ because He would not find a better opportunity than this to restore his broken kingdom. Jesus Christ being fully human has the possibility of falling and if He does fall, the Devil wins the battle, but Jesus disappoints the Devil and crushes its hopes.
4. Jesus did not use His powers for his own good. For the one who turned water into wine, multiplied loaves, walked on water, raised the dead, to change a stone into bread is not a difficult task. He chose not to do in spite of his hunger to prove to Satan that He came to the world only for the redemption of the others.
5. Our act of penance and mortification has a lot of salvific value. As Archbishop Timothy Dolan would write in his book, ‘Priests for the third millennium’ that when we forgo our legitimate pleasures like eating, drinking, sleeping by way of penance it makes it easy for us to forgo our illegitimate pleasures.
Something that impressed me about Jesus while going through this text was his knowledge on Scriptures. Of course He is the Word incarnate, but in several occasions He uses the Word of God. Even here when He was tempted by the Devil, He uses the Word of God from Deut 8:3, 6:16, 6:13 to overcome the temptation. Such is the power of Word of God. Jesus throughout His journey keeps using the Word of God which gives us a simple clue to overcome our temptation. Supposing a person is tempted very badly to misuse his body, He can use the text from 1 Cor 6:19, ‘Your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, within you, which you have from God’ and pray to overcome the temptation. As St. Paul in his letter to Ephesians 6: 17, would say, ‘take the sword of the Spirit which is the word of God’ let us march ahead in our life’s journey taking this sword of the Spirit.
The New Jerome Biblical Commentary
Preachers Outline and Sermon Bible