In the epic battle in the wilderness, after Christ had fasted for 40 days and forty nights, Satan thought he could get to Jesus through vanity (Matt. 4:3). Notice he said IF you REALLY are the Son of God, then you aught to at least be able to turn these rocks into bread. Why should you go hungry obeying God when you have the power to appease yourself?
The question was first one of vanity and second of fleshly appeasement. Sure Christ could have been indignant at being called something less than God’s very Son, but that would have been vain. And He could easily have turned the stones to bread to relieve His great hunger, but that would not have helped Him grow spiritually stronger in his battle with Satan. The very purpose of fasting is to draw close to God, for strength in the fight against our adversary. Christ answered by speaking the mind of God:
“….it is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God (Matt. 4:4).
When Satan tempted Christ a second time by saying He could easily have His angels protect Him if he threw Himself from the temple, he again resorted to vanity. Surely Christ had the protection of God at His disposal in any situation?
But ” Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.
Obviously, vanity does not put God first, and Christ set a sterling example of humble submission to His Father. (more…)