The depth and complexity of evil.
How to fight evil in our lives?

James 1:13-15 – Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.

[TEXT Luke 4:1-13]

World – sin outside you
Flesh – sin within you, self centeredness
Devil – sin above you, forces working to magnify the package of evil that is on the path to steal, kill, and destroy.

Sin from outside – The world
Romans 5:12 – Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned—

Romans 8:20-22 – For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. 22 For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now.

Sin from inside – The flesh
Psalm 51:5 – Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.

Mark 7:20-23 – And he said, “What comes out of a person is what defiles him. For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.”

Sin from above – the devils on the unseen realm
Ephesians 4:26-27 – Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 27 and give no opportunity to the devil.

1 Timothy 3:6 – He must not be a recent convert, or he may become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil.

When you are being assaulted, when you are in the wilderness, what do you do? Under pressure we discover our truest self.

Depth and complexity of evil.
How to defeat evil using scripture?

Spiritual darkness takes the evil in the world and the evil inside of us, and magnifies it.

Strategies of devil against Jesus – My way is easy!
Main strategy – What do all these temptations have in common.
Aren’t you hungry? Make bread
You want to be king? Take the easy road, no cross needed.
Trust God for your safety – prove it! Show the world.

He’s trying to knock Jesus off of his mission. Do something for you. You want to be king? You don’t need to suffer, I’ll give it to you, just take this shortcut. Don’t you trust God for your safety, prove it in front of everyone.

Jesus came to serve not to be served. Jesus uses his power for others– to point others to the kingdom God; ultimately through suffering and death on the cross.

When something becomes more important than God in your life it will enslave you.
Jesus came to set you free, we are addicts.

We step on people, break the law, we are filled with anger and bitterness. Pride and conceit lead us to walk in the devil’s ways.

Weapons – temptation & accusation – exchanging truth for a lie.
Temptation – enticed to do something wrong. “It’ll be ok, just do it.”
Playing down the holiness and/or plan of God.

Accusation – Look at what you have done! God couldn’t possible love you any more. How could call yourself a Christian? –

Lies that stick- You are ugly, you are dumb, you are bad with money, you are unlucky, you are always going to…
Who are you in Christ? Because of Christ?

It’s the message of scripture.
Satan can not hurt you unless he can get false beliefs and lies into your heart. What you believe about God and yourself. What you believe about right and wrong. I have witnessed this many times! What you believe about yourself and God has an immensely powerful affect on your life.

How to defeat satan’s pressure?
Jesus always quotes scripture! On the cross Ps 22, My God, My God why have you forsaken me?
Father into your hands I commend my spirit. – Ps 31:5

Most of the time you can pretend — when you’re with people, you’re aware of who you ought to be, or who want to be, or who they expect you to be. During times of ease you may be able to mask yourself or control yourself just enough. [CS Fishing]

If you’re in agony, whatever is in you is just coming out. When Jesus was in times of crisis, scripture was coming out. Which means he was permeated, saturated, soaked in scripture. Being immersed in scripture was in the deep stuff.

It’s not magic like waving a Bible around and Satans runs away like a vampire in sunlight.
[Note: even Satan quotes scripture in vs 10-11]

Prove yourself?
Save yourself?
I’ll only be love-able, I’ll only be significant, I’ll only be secure… if I get this, accomplish this…

The thing that Satan wanted to stop at all cost, was Jesus going to the cross.
The big test was in the garden of gethsemane – right before Jesus was going to drink the cup of God’s wrath for you and me.

Jesus passed the test, not as our example, but as our savior. –> Gospel