Saturday, April 9, 2005

Luke 4:1–13

After Jesus was tempted, the devil left for an opportune time. That time was in the garden, one presumes, when Jesus (according to Luke) sweated drops of blood.

After his meeting with John, Jesus first needs to confront and deal with himself, with his own hopes and dreams, and subordinate all of them to the will of God. This is something I have never been able to do myself until recently, because I wasn’t even in touch with my own hopes and dreams, let alone able to see them as potential distractions.

Jesus of course gets everything he wants, food, power, authority, self-confidence in his own mission, safety. Luke gives the three temptations in a different order from Matthew and from the way we normally remember them. Matthew’s go food, safety, power. But Luke puts the bit about safety, the temptation to dive off the pinnacle of the temple and be saved, as the last one.

This is because, I think, for Luke this is the resurrection. Jesus receives all the things he is tempted with, but only by being willing not to get them, and that’s why he sweated those drops of blood.

I want to take my own will and place it at Jesus’ feet, for him to use as he wishes. I am now at a place in my life where I think I have gotten rather well in touch with what I want, some of which I have received and some not. It’s not about changing what one wants though. It’s about being willing to, as they put it, “deal with unfulfilled desire.” It’s ok to want things, the point is to place getting what one wants in second place and not in first.

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