“Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
Happy Veterans Day to all of my Veterans listening in. Extend my sincere gratitude to the veterans in your life if you are married to one or are the daughter or son of a very brave soul.
This verse hits you hard with that ending statement. But the flesh is weak. I can start and end a devotional with those four words. The Flesh is Weak.
There is nothing else to it.
We’ve been given these bodies, we’ve been placed on earth, and temptation can be found everywhere.
If you think you are exempt from temptation, you’re not. If you think you are battling temptation alone, you are not. The enemy can tempt us all in very different ways. Even Jesus was tempted by the enemy.
Matthew 4:1-11 tells the story of when Jesus was tempted.
Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2 After fasting forty days and forty nights; he was hungry. 3 The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”
4 Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.”
5 Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. 6 “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written:
“‘He will command his angels concerning you,
and they will lift you up in their hands,
so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.”
7 Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.”
I love this story. I love the picture this paints. I love Jesus’ clap backs. But something else really stood out to me. The enemy repeated scripture. Take notice of that, the enemy knows the word of God, and he flipped the script and tempted Jesus with the very words we repeat and meditate on daily.
Look out for snakes disguised as doves.
Jesus was hungry, and he was tempted with food. And sometimes we are hungry. Hungry for a new job, more income, materialistic things, and we feed on what the earth has to offer rather than on the word of God.
My prayer today is that we take this life day by day. Trying to grow closer to God every single day. Trying to lean into our spirits rather than the flesh. But at the same time, I pray we have grace when the flesh is weak. Get back up, and try again. Today is a new day.
God of love, thank you for this beautiful day. Thank you for sending your son; thank you for your endless grace. When we are tempted, I pray we hold onto your word and your eternal promise. May we have the strength to turn away from anything intended to harm us. May we keep a weary eye for when the enemy tempts us with your word. We love you with all that we are. It is in your Holy name that we pray, Amen!