1.  Satan tempted Jesus to cast Himself down from the Temple, on the premise that Holy Angels would save Him from destruction

In the previous post, I asked the question, “Did Satan Also Promise Kingdoms, Glory And Power To Adam And Eve In Exchange For Their Worship?”   I will attempt to explore the nature of the third temptation today. We see that satan dared Jesus to cast Himself down from a pinnacle of the Temple

Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple

And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone

Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God (Matthew 4: 5 – 7).

 

2. What is a pinnacle of the Temple?

The word pinnacle (pterygion/G 4419) means wing.  Several sources say that the pinnacle was a very high point on the roof of the Temple, possibly the highest. It is thought that it was located at the Southeastern corner of the roof of the temple and that it overlooked the Kidron Valley which lay hundreds of feet below (Easton’s Bible Dictionary, Smith’s Bible Dictionary).

Therefore, anyone who jumped from the pinnacle  would certainly  die as he/she fell into the rocky ravine of the Kidron Valley

 

3.  What really was the nature of the Temptation?

Satan taunted and dared Jesus to prove Himself to be the  Son of God in a spectacular,  flamboyant,  “dare-devil” showcase. Can you imagine the Lord jumping from the Temple and the Angels of God  swooping in to rescue Him?

This may  also have been a very public event as the people in the vicinity would certainly have rushed to see who dared to commit such a deed in the location of  their holy place.  Satan would have laughed his head off.

Jesus’ response reveals that He discerned that satan was tempting Him to sin presumptuously.  The question that we need to ask is whether or not Jesus needed to resort to this tactic in order to prove that He was the Son of God.

Furthermore, Satan maliciously twisted the Word of God and used it out of context.  When the Psalmist quoted the scripture of Psalm 91, he declared that those who dwell in the Presence of God would be provided with Angelic protection when faced with terror, arrows, night-time plagues and day time destruction.

The Psalmist was not speaking about Angelic protection for those who wanted to prove their spiritual power by foolish stunts:

There (in the secret  place of the Most High) shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling

For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways (Psalm 91: 10 & 1).

 

4.   Satan, do not tempt the Lord your God

Jesus’ response was to rebuke the devil and to tell him not to tempt (ekpeirazō/G 1598)  the Lord his God. Jesus revealed Himself to be God and Lord over the enemy in His response.  Peirazō (G 3985) is one of the root words for Tempt (ekpeirazō/G 1598) and the meaning has  been explained in previous posts.

Satan is an angel who is under the authority of the Lord his God. He is to obey orders, not to give orders and dares to the Lord.  He therefore revealed his disrespect for the Father in the very nature of the temptation.

Scriptures show how Jesus was revealed as the Son of God:

And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of  God – Luke 1: 35.

And unclean spirits, when they saw him, fell down before him, and cried, saying, Thou art the Son of GodMatthew 3: 11 (this should have been satan‘s response to the Lord).

And devils also came out of many, crying out, and saying, Thou art Christ the Son of God. And he rebuking them suffered them not to speak: for they knew that he was Christ – Luke 4: 41

Now when the centurion, and they that were with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the Son of God – Matthew 27: 54.

is “declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead” – Romans 1: 4.

How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him – Acts 10: 38.

RELATED READINGS WHICH EXPLAIN THE MEANING OF “TEMPT” IN  JESUS’ RESPONSE TO SATAN

What Does It Mean To Be Tempted By Satan The Serpent?

More On The Meaning Of Temptation In The Holy Scriptures

Blessings, peace and angelic prosperity.

 

 

 

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