Just Say “No”

Today’s post is tough meat for the mature. May you receive grace to obey God’s counsel to you today.

Matthew 4:2-4 NIV | After fasting forty days and forty nights, He was hungry. The tempter came to Him and said, ‘If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.’

Jesus answered, ‘It is written: Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.'”

The Holy Spirit showed me something in the first temptation of Jesus that I have never seen before. Jesus was hungry after fasting for 40 days in the desert. Hunger was a legitimate need He had. But He chose to set aside His legitimate need for food to please God. Jesus wasn’t ready to satisfy His need with any and every opportunity that came His way.

I doubt if anyone would have judged him harshly if He chose to satisfy His hunger after a tough fast had ended. Satan didn’t ask Jesus to break His fast prematurely; the fast had already ended! But Jesus chose to sacrifice His legitimate need, because the instruction to turn stone into bread did not come from the Father. He set His need aside in order to please God.

What’s the lesson here? Your desire for something, even the legitimate need for it, is not an excuse to go beyond the boundaries that God has placed on you. You have to learn to just say “No”.

1Corinthians 9:27 EEV | “I rule my own body strongly and I make it my slave. I have taught other people about how to run this race. And I myself also want to win the reward from God. I do not want God to say to me: You yourself do not do the things you teach. So, I am removing you from the race.'”

Even Apostle Paul lived his life the same way. That you need something is not enough reason to say “Yes” to any opportunity to satisfy that need.

You and I need self control, and who better to ask than the One whose fruit is self control.

Galatians 5:22-23 NIV | “But the fruit of the Holy Spirit is … self control.”

Let us pray: Precious Holy Spirit fill us afresh with your anointing and give us the grace to say “No” to temptation.