The devil led him to Jerusalem and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down from here. For it is written: ‘He will command his angels concerning you to guard you carefully; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’”Jesus answered, “It is said: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’ ”
It would have been remarkable. Great crowds would have gathered as Jesus stood on the highest point of the temple. There would have been a collective gasp as Jesus jumped. Then as he neared certain death, angels would have slowed his body and brought him to a standing position on the pavement. Absolutely remarkable!
Think of the crowd’s reaction. Right then, they would have known they were in the presence of deity. Jesus would have their attention. He could have taught great truths and called the people to great things. He could have inspired and motivated and told everyone, “God loves you.”
But one thing would have been missing. The cross. Jesus did not come to dazzle some but to die for all. The path he pioneered was not cut with the spectacular but with suffering. Jesus chose atonement over attention. He rejected Satan’s painless proposal for the Father’s painful plan. And he did it for you and for me.
Lord Jesus, thank you for rejecting Satan’s offer for the easy way. Thank you for choosing the way of suffering. Thank you for the cross. Thank you for dying in my place. Amen.
If you have enjoyed these daily devotionals from Ron, check out his new book, Journey through the Bible, and read through the Bible this year. Click here to order.