March 10 – Sunday
First Sunday of Lent
Gospel: LK 4:1-13 Jesus fasted forty days and was tempted by the devil
Why did Satan tempt Jesus at the end of his lengthy period of fasting? Satan knew that Jesus was embarking on an important spiritual mission for the kingdom of God.
Satan's first temptation appealed to Jesus' physical desires and hunger.
Look at Jesus’ answer:
Man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.
Satan tempted Jesus a second time by presenting him with the best the world could offer – great riches, privileges, glory and fame, and the power to rule over all the kingdoms of the world and Jesus said: "It is written, `You shall worship the Lord your God, and him only shall you serve'".
Satan's last temptation was to convince Jesus that he should position himself at the pinnacle of the temple in Jerusalem, the holiest place on earth where God dwelt in a special way with his people, and there perform a spectacular sign that would prove beyond a doubt that he was the Messiah, God's anointed Son.
What lesson can we learn from Jesus' temptation in the wilderness? How can we hope to fight temptation and overcome sin in our own personal lives?
Jesus did not rely on his own human strength and will-power for overcoming temptation. He relied on the Holy Spirit to give him strength, wisdom, courage, and self-control. The Lord Jesus knows that we cannot fight temptation on our own. We need the strength and guidance of the Holy Spirit to help us.
The forty days of Lent is the annual retreat of the people of God in imitation of Jesus' forty days in the wilderness. We are called to journey with the Lord in a special season of prayer, fasting, almsgiving, repentance, and renewal as we prepare to celebrate the feast of Easter, the Christian Passover.
Lord Jesus, your word is life and joy for me. Fill me with your Holy Spirit that I may have the strength and courage to embrace your will in all things and to renounce whatever is contrary to it. Amen