Foundational themes in Genesis (Part 19)

Theme: Temptation (Part 2)

(Key verses: Genesis 3:1-6; Matt 4:1-11)

The theme of temptation is foundational to our understanding of God’s work in the generation of the first man Adam. Without the right and solid foundations no building will stand. Jesus Christ is our foundation and builder and what He starts, He also finishes to perfection, as His Father ordained it unto Him (Matt 25:34; 1Cor 3:10; 1Tim 6:19; 2Tim 2:19; Heb 1:10; Heb 11:10). He also created evil and darkness which is “all that is in the world” of the first Adam (Gen 1:2: Matt 4:16; Matt 6:23):

Isa 45:7 I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

1Jn 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

Adam and Eve experienced this darkness of evil through their inherent lusts before they even touched the forbidden fruit. God created and “works all things” with a holy and loving purpose according to His one will (Eph 1:11). After the serpent tempted and “beguiled Eve through his subtlety”, the evil lusts in her were “enticed”, and that also happened inside Adam “with her” (Gen 3:1-5; 2Cor 11:3):

Gen 3:6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food [the lust of the flesh], and that it was pleasant to the eyes [the lust of the eyes], and a tree to be desired to make one wise [the pride of life], she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.

Jas 1:14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.

We know that Jesus was brought forth and appointed by God, the Father, to be the Creator and God of this creation (Rev 3:14; John 16:27; John 17:8; Col 1:15-17; Heb 1:1-4; John 1:1-4). With Jesus’ incarnation He was made of the same weak and corruptible flesh as all in the generation of the first Adam (1Cor 15:42-44). As we see in the story of Adam and Eve, all in Adamic flesh are pre-ordained by God to go through temptations and trials for His purposes (Isa 46:10-11). Jesus, “in the days of His flesh”, was not exempted from anything which all in the first Adam is subjected to by God’s design:

Heb 2:16 For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham.

Heb 5:7-9 Who [Jesus] in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death [“the body of this death” – Rom 7:24], and was heard in that he feared; 8 Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered. 9 And being made perfect [Greek aorist tense], he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him.

Jesus, as a “son of man” (or son of Adam), had to grow through a process of maturing like all of us and had no problem to associate Himself, even in that respect, with the generation of the first Adam. The first man Adam’s flesh was “not good” – it is called “corruption” (1Cor 15:42-44; Psa 8:1-9; Heb 2:6-9; Mat 8:20; Matt 11:19; Matt 12:40; Matt 19:17). Jesus, as the spiritual “Son of God”, was subjected to “all points” of temptation in His flesh, yet “without sin”. Jesus was indeed separated from sinners – He did not give in to those temptations to conceive and to bring forth sin (Matt 4:1-11; John 1:14; 1John 1:1):

Jas 1:14-15 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. 15 Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.

Heb 4:15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities [our fleshly nature with all its lusts]; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.

1Pe 1:19 But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.

Heb 7:26 For such an high priest became us, who [Jesus] is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens.

Although Jesus was conceived in His earthly mother by the holy spirit of God, He shared this same “body of sin” through Mary, who too was of “the loins” of David (Matt 1:18-20). Mary had the same egg as any other natural woman who becomes pregnant and any false teaching of an “immaculate” conception of Mary is foreign to the Scriptures. Jesus was “made of a woman” and any natural woman can only bring forth a natural offspring which links Him directly to the generation of the first man Adam (Matt 19:17; Luk 3:23-38; Acts 2:30; Rom 1:3). The spirit of the antichrist cannot accept this truth (1John 4:3). All things in Adam applied to Jesus “in the days of his flesh”, also these verses:

Psa 51:5 Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.

Gal 4:4 But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law.

2Co 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

Jesus’ resistance to the temptation in the wilderness and surrendering His will to that of the Father shows us why He was “yet without sin” and “knew no sin”, even while He was “after the flesh”:

Luk 22:42 Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.

2Co 5:16 Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more.

Jesus Christ is indeed our sin offering. His “body of sin” was subject to corruption and had to die or “go away” to open “the way” for the new “body” to come, even “the body of [the] Christ” for all in the generation of the first Adam (Heb 10:20; John 14:6; 1Cor 12:27):

Rom 6:6 Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.

Joh 16:7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I
go away [in flesh]: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.

Lev 4:3 If the priest that is anointed [Lev 21:10-23; Ps 133:2. The Greek Septuagint also has “chief priest” which is the high priest as a type of Christ] do sin according to the sin of the people [have a “the body of sin”]; then let him bring for his sin, which he hath sinned, a young bullock without blemish unto the LORD for a sin offering.

“Christ after the flesh” had to grow up as a normal human being “under the law” (Matt 3:15; Matt 5:17-20; Matt 9:16-17). When He started His spiritual ministry at the age of about thirty years, He openly defied the carnal laws of Moses (Heb 7:9-28; Matt 5:21-48; John 5:1-18; John 8:3-11; Matt 12:1-8). Natural laws in their various forms are good, if we “use it lawfully”, meaning they apply to the natural man, and not to a righteous man.

1Ti 1:8-10  But we know that the law is good, if a man use it lawfully;  9  Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers,  10  For whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine.

The first Adam must live “under the law” because he must first live “under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the Father” when the law of the spirit of God set that person free from the law of sin.

Gal 4:1-7  Now I say, That the heir, as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he be lord of all;  2  But is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father.  3  Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world:  4  But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,  5  To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.  6  And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.  7  Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.

Rom 8:1-4  There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.  2  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.  3  For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:  4  That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.

When grace and truth come (through the spiritual ministry of Christ “after the spirit” of the Father), the elected ones are given “the spirit of promise which is the earnest of our inheritance” while they are yet in natural bodies of flesh.

Eph 1:13-14  In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,  14  Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.

The elect of God indeed remains for now in a body of flesh as they are “reaching forth” and “follow after” the final “redemption of the purchased possession” at the resurrection of the dead (John 1:17; Gal 4:2; 1Cor 15:17-20):

Php 3:10-14 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; 11 If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. 12 Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. 13 Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, 14 I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

As Jesus associated with the flesh of our old Adam, so His church now associates with the “purchased possession” of a spiritual “body” of incorruption – the “church of God” (Acts 20:28; 1Tim 3:15; Heb 12:23). Through Jesus, this is “now made manifest” to those who can receive it. The first Adam was preordained by God to come in a body of corruption and to suffer patiently under temptations and trials:

Eph 5:30 For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.

Col 1:26-27 Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints: 27 To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

Jesus is making it “known” to them whom He has chosen to overcome sin by His spirit – which is His Word (John 6:63):

Joh 3:34 For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him.

Joh 16:15 (1912 WNT) Everything that the Father has is mine; that is why I said that the Spirit of Truth takes of what is mine and will make it known to you.

Temptations influence and affect young and old the same and not one person without the spirit of God can stand against the serpent’s wiles and devices. It is only by the “blood of the Lamb” and the “word of their testimony” anyone will know and discern the “devices” of the serpent:

Rev 12:11 And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.

2Co 2:11 Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.

The “devices” of our adversary are always following the same pattern as the events in the garden of Eden and in the wilderness with Jesus demonstrates. He misrepresents the commandment or law of God. The serpent approached Jesus with the same challenge to God’s words:

Mat 3:16-17 to Matt 4:1-3 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred. And when the tempter came to him, he said, If (or since) thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.

Right after God said that Jesus is His beloved Son, the serpent tempted Jesus to apply God’s Word to physical and worldly things only. Adam, also a son of God, was not spiritually perfect, or beloved like Jesus (Luk 3:38). Adam and Eve were not equipped, by God’s design, to resist this temptation. Satan wanted Jesus to focus and highlight the physical application of the word of God in affecting immediate fulfillment and short-term glorification of self-worship – which is the worship of “the beast” (the “man of sin”) and the “red dragon” – Satan himself (Matt 4:1-11; Matt 6:1-34; Rev 12:3; Rev 13:2-4; 2Thes 2:3-4). While there is a physical application of God’s Word, that is not our objective but only our starting point (Rom 1:20). For those who are given to see this, the revelation of Jesus starts off with the revelation of the first man Adam or the man of sin inside us (2Thess 2:3-4; Rev 13:1-18). This is an on-going unveiling and through temptations and trials we learn about this man of sin, “little by little” (John 3:30; Ex 23:30). We also get to know Jesus and His doctrine “after this flesh” first, but we are encouraged by Scripture to move on to see Him as the spiritual Son of God, if God permits:

2Co 5:16 Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more.

Rev 1:17 And when I [John] saw him [in spirit], I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last:

Heb 6:1-3 Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, 2 Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment. 3 And this will we do, if God permit.

The temptation of Jesus had all the aspects of the temptation of Adam and Eve (lust of the flesh and eyes and the pride of life) as “all things come alike to all” (Gen 3:6; 1John 2:16; Ecc 9:2). Jesus was tempted in “all points…[and]…made like unto” us to die to the flesh and to open the way to the resurrection of the dead (1Cor 15:3-5, 22). He came to show us that God has a plan with all the evil and suffering we face daily. God is busy working His perfect plan with compassionate love and care at all times (1John 3:1; Rom 5:6-10; 1Tim 1:14-15; John 3:16). God’s one plan with the first Adam is still, and was always on track and there are no shortcuts in the process. Jesus is the only one whom God appointed to assist us to “sin no more” and patiently endure temptation to “possess” our souls (John 5:14; John 8:11; Phil 4:13; Luk 21:19):

Heb 2:17-18 Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. 18 For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour [assist] them that are tempted.

Rom 4:24-25 But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead; 25 Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.

We overcome when we endure by His strength the manifold or diverse temptations and not giving up or giving in to them. The resurrected Jesus alone is our “way to escape” because by Him we are “able to bear it”:

Php 2:12-13 Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. 13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

1Co 10:13-14 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it. 14 Wherefore, my dearly beloved, flee from idolatry.

The person who is tempted and endures it in this life, is called “blessed” because he receives “the crown of life” – the “blessed and holy” first resurrection. This is what is termed in Scripture as “he that overcomes the world” through Christ…

Jas 1:12 Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.

Rev 20:4-6  And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.  5  But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.  6  Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.

1Jn 5:4-5  For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.  5  Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?

Rev 2:7  He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.

Rev 2:26  And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations.


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Want let op julle roeping, broeders: julle is nie baie wyse na die vlees nie, nie baie magtiges, nie baie edeles nie; maar wat dwaas is by die wêreld, het God uitverkies om die wyse te beskaam; en wat swak is by die wêreld, het God uitverkies om wat sterk is, te beskaam; en wat onedel is by die wêreld en wat verag is, het God uitverkies, en wat niks is nie, om wat iets is, tot niet te maak, sodat geen vlees voor Hom sou roem nie. (1Kor 1:26-29)
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