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Along Comes The Devil!

**You must worship the Lord God, and serve Him alone** (Luke 4:8).
Deuteronomy 26:4-10; Psalms 91:1-2,10-15; Romans 10:8-13; Luke 4:1-13

Sermon Topic Temptation

Sermon Week First Sunday of Lent Cycle C

Scripture Summary Luke 4:8


In Southern Florida, a signboard in front of a country Church announces the title of the next Sunday's sermon. Once, in the midst of a particularly intense heat-wave, the pastor posted a title which left no doubt about the next sermon topic:


Several years ago, a Texas newspaper ran an account of an automobile accident which included the following:

Passers-by carried the unconscious driver to a nearby service station. The crash victim then came to and, as he opened his eyes, he panicked, struggling mightily to break away from the circle of good samaritans and rubberneckers gathered round him. Whereupon a rescue team arrived, quickly subdued him, and took him to a hospital.

Asked later why he had made that desperate attempt to get away from his rescuers, he explained that they had taken him to a Shell station -- and someone was standing in front of the "S
The story reminds us -- as does today's Gospel Lesson -- of our ability to create our own "hells" on earth, our ability to estrange ourselves form God.

The Apostle John has written, "We can be sure that we are in God only when the one who claims to be living in Him is living the same kind of life Christ lived" (I Jn. 2:6).

As the Lenten Season begins, today's Gospel Lesson gives us a magnificent preview of the kind of life Christ lived.

Jesus is preparing to begin His public ministry. He retreats into the desert wilderness for a period of prayer and fasting. His focus is on living the good life -- His "heaven on earth," His intimate union with the Father, His all-out devotion to the Father's Will. And, in the midst of this holy exercise, along comes the devil with his hellish temptations.

"Your focus is all wrong," Satan says in effect. "Forget about Your Father and His commandments. Focus your attention on my version of the good life. It's power and prestige and money and control. And it's all yours. I will give you this power and the glory of these kingdoms. Just worship me -- put me [...]

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