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Matthew 4:4–11 ‘Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”’ (v4)

Maybe you are the kind of person who always thinks of a smart reply once a conversation is over?! Plenty of people find themselves unable to know what to say when criticised or challenged, and it’s only later that the right words come to them.

We are not told exactly how Satan tempted Jesus, but His replies are immediate, and, in each case, He quotes a verse taken from the book of Deuteronomy, the fifth book in the Bible.

In Deuteronomy, we read about the events at the end of the forty years of wilderness journeys that came before Israel entered the Promised Land.

We read a second (deutero) reading of the law given in Exodus. Where Israel failed to overcome the temptations they faced, Jesus’ triumphed after His 40 days of testing.

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Jesus is confident in the Word of God each time. He doesn’t attempt to come up with a clever retort, but simply quotes a relevant scripture.

Jesus knew His scripture (Old Testament) and could quote from it. Bible memorisation is a great tool for us to build up our faith, to recall what God says and especially to repel the enemy in times of temptation.

If God has said something, we can trust it. Jesus treats the Word like the law of gravity: you can rely on it every moment of every day.

Of course we need to interpret the Word correctly, and not every verse functions the same as every other. But, providing we have understood it correctly, we can know that it’s true and will save us.


A Prayer To Make:
‘Thank You, Lord, that Your Word is reliable. Help to remember verses so that I can withstand the temptations I face. Amen.’

An Action To Take:
Find a list of the top ten verses to memorise and start learning Scripture off by heart.

Scripture To Consider:
Ps. 19:7–14; Isa. 55:8–13; Col. 3:15–17; 2 Pet. 1:12–21

Micha Jazz is Director of Resources at Waverley Abbey, UK.