October 15, 2021
Daily Reading: Mark 1-3
And he was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted of Satan; and was with the wild beasts; and the angels ministered unto him.
And was with the wild beasts. When in Heaven, I would like to ask the Lord about this small phrase, found only here. He was with the wild beasts.
Was it like in the Garden of Eden when Adam and Eve safely roamed the garden with no fear of the beasts therein? Was it like the lion’s den in the day of Daniel? Were they a threat to Him, or did they nicely lay down at His feet in obedience and loyalty? Was there danger toward Him from the snarls of the wild beasts. or passive interest on their part?
Since this was a time of temptation, since Satan was there, it makes sense that the mention of the wild beasts was a danger, yet the Father providentially protected His Son. We simply do not have any more than; and was with the wild beasts. An interesting point to ponder no doubt.
But, as much as we may speculate about the wild beasts, there is one thing certain. Satan was there. He tempted our Lord. Sometimes while reading of this time of temptation we forget one thing, our Lord was at His weakest point in His public ministry here. For He fasted these forty days, then came the great temptation (see Matthew 4, and Luke 4). He was tempted in all points (lust of the eyes, lust of the flesh, and pride of life/I John 2:16) yet He did not yield to the temptation.
This all took place just after His baptism by John the Baptist. You know, having pastored for many years this makes a sort of sad sense to me. Having baptized many, I have seen most slip off into the wilderness among the wild beasts and yield to the temptations that creep up before them. After the new birth, then baptism, it seems many let down their guard. This is when a new babe in Christ is most vulnerable to temptation. But like Christ, this is a time they face alone and must determine to be faithful.
Yet not really alone. For just as the angels ministered to Jesus, there are angels to minister to every child of God. Some visible and some invisible. But that is a lesson for another day.
Until tomorrow, live for Christ today.