Of all the people recorded in Scripture, the most self-aware person was Jesus. Immediately after His baptism, Jesus is taken and tempted, confronted, and threatened in the wilderness. Why? The heavens had just opened and God had spoken a word of affirmation over Jesus. When God affirms who you are, as is depicted in Matthew 3, hell certainly takes notice. That word of affirmation: “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.” (Matthew 3:17, NLT)
There are two statements that would certainly cause your enemy to be angry. First, anything God loves the devil hates and anything God hates the devil loves. Second, any person who brings God joy is going to be pressed and attacked. The devil doesn’t make it his mission to bring God joy. He’s the troublemaker of/from heaven, a rebel who wants all attention on him.
Any son of God is automatically troublesome to hell. A son possesses the authority that his father gives. A firstborn son in the Bible is the main inheritor of all things of his father. This situation in Matthew 3 appears extremely troubling to hell and the plans that Lucifer had. Up till this point Lucifer was having his way on the earth. He’d heard the voice of God. He’d heard it before. After all he was once a part of the court of heaven; and a word of affirmation from God is a threat to Lucifer.
Satan takes Jesus to the wilderness to thwart the plan of God. He knew that anyone who pleases God is trouble for him. Therefore, he must thwart this early, get it stopped before it ever gets started. Jesus knew what His purpose was. It was engrained into His very fiber. At twelve years old, Jesus said to His own parents, “I must be about my Father’s business.” Jesus was aware of Who he was and what his purpose was. That’s how He could resist everything Satan threw at him in the wilderness, withstood the pharisees, withstood the religious leaders, and ultimately the cross. Had Jesus not understood who He was, and what His purpose was, He would never have been able to withstand all of that and the crushing of the crucifixion.
How do you get to that level of awareness? By becoming so focused that temptation, persecution, or any trying situation doesn’t derail you, but rather emboldens you. You need to do some serious studying of yourself. Then, do some serious studying of who you are in Christ. You have to know who you are! If you can’t answer that for yourself, how will you ever answer anyone else, let alone the devil. When he comes around, he will tempt you into laying down who you are in Christ for a sham of what he’s offering. Many of us don’t think our enemy cares who we are. Oh friend, he does! You are a child of God, joint heir with Christ. Therefore, like Jesus, in Matthew 3, you bring joy to God. And God is speaking over you, words of affirmation. The devil heard that and he’s taking the pain of those words out on you. He’s trying to figure out if you heard those words, and if you believe them.
John 1:26, Matthew 4:1-11, Matthew 16:16-17, John 17:1-5