WE NEED TO CONFRONT AND CONQUER TEMPTATIONS LIKE JESUS DID

“It has been said: You must not put the Lord your God to the test”

“It has been said: You must not put the Lord your God to the test”

Lent begins with a reflection on the Temptation of Jesus in the wilderness. Jesus temptation as described in the Gospels are pictorial and dramatic representations of the inner struggle against a temptation that Jesus experienced throughout his public life. The devil was trying to prevent Jesus from accomplishing his mission of saving mankind from the bondage of sin, mainly through a temptation to become the political Messiah of Jewish expectations, and to use his Divine power first for his own convenience and then to avoid suffering and death.

Like Jesus, we need to confront and conquer temptations. Every one of us is tempted to seek sinful pleasures, easy wealth and a position of authority, and is drawn to the use of unjust or sinful means to attain good ends. Jesus sets a model for conquering temptations through prayer, penance and the effective use of the ‘‘word of God.” Temptations make us true warriors of God by strengthening our minds and hearts. We are never tempted beyond the strength God gives us. In his first letter, St. John assures us: “The One Who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world” (1 John 4:4). Hence during Lent, let us confront our evil tendencies with prayer (especially by participating in the Holy Mass), with penance and with the meditative reading of the Bible. Knowledge of the Bible prepares us for the moment of temptation by enabling us “to know Jesus more clearly, to love him more dearly and to follow him more nearly, day by day,” as William Barclay puts it.

Source: Excerpted from Gospel reflection by Fr Tony Kadavil available at http://frtonyshomilies.com

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