Temptation 2. IDOLATRY

February 28, 2020 Preacher: Gareth Franks Series: Temptation

Topic: Christian Living Scripture: Luke 4:1–13

Home Group Study

Sermon Date: 28 February 2020

Text: Luke 4:1-13


Opening Discussion: Have you ever had dreams of fame? Have you ever dreamt of being a movie star, famous musician, artist or sports hero? Who hasn't? Share with the group one of your funniest aspirations.


Being Lord of all the kingdoms of this earth was a legitimate goal for Jesus as the Son of God, but bowing before Satan to achieve that goal would be wrong.

This is the second temptation in our text.  The devil did not succeed on the first one, so he very subtly tries again. “And the devil took him up and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time, and said to him, "To you I will give all this authority and their glory, for it has been delivered to me, and I give it to whom I will. If you, then, will worship me, it will all be yours." (Luke 4:5-7)

The temptation was to worship Satan and then be given the whole world. This is a temptation for Jesus to bypass the cross and to engage in idolatry. Like a clever salesman, Satan sets out his merchandise without mentioning the price tag. He always shows the pleasures of sin (which are real), but he doesn’t mention the stiff consequences that inevitably follow. “Worship me and I’ll give you dominion over all the kingdoms of the earth.” Sounds like a reasonable deal! But he fails to mention that Jesus will then be the servant of Satan, and the holy union between Father and Son will be forever broken and that Jesus’ mission as Savior will be ruined.

How did Jesus respond? He answered the devil, “It is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and him only shall you serve’ ” (8:8). Jesus again responded by quoting God’s word to Satan. He affirmed that we are to worship and serve only God. To worship and serve anyone else is idol worship and in direct rebellion to God and his written word.

Investigation & Interpretation:

  • Read: Luke 4:1-13
  1. What was the next temptation that Satan confronted Jesus with? v.5-8
  2. What had God the Father already promised His son (Psalm 2:7-8)?
  3. What had to come first (Luke 24:25-27)?
  4. In what way has the devil twisted the scriptures in verse 7?
  5. What Old Testament scripture is Jesus quoting in verse 8?


How must I change?

  • Is there a Truth to be believed?

Our Lord’s victory over this temptation again shows that He has the right to rule. He is the King of kings and the Lord of lords. As Christians, what are some ways we usurp God’s authority over our lives?

  • Is there an Attitude to be fostered?

Satan is a liar and a thief. He claims to own and he offers to give that which is not his. He glamorizes sin and hides away the terrible consequences of these sins. What are some attitudes and lies of Satan that people are prone to believe?

  • Is there a Behavior to be changed?

What are some ways that the devil tempts us to bypass the cross, forget about the gospel and to engage in idolatry (worshiping the creature rather than the Creator)?


If Satan cannot re-direct our worship, he will seek to reduce it to less than what it should be. Satan represented worship as a means to an end (“Worship me and all this will be yours.”) Our Lord saw worship as the end, the chief goal of man. Worship is our highest calling, our greatest privilege. Unfortunately, even when we are worshipping God, we often view worship as a means. We worship so that we will feel good, so that we will receive a blessing. We pray, not so much to praise God, but to petition Him for what we want. We read the Bible, not to adore Him, but to find promises which we might claim. Let us beware of worshipping God as a means, rather than as our highest goal.

We must be wise to the schemes of Satan, but more importantly, we must bow before the superiority of the Son of God. Jesus Christ is our great example and teacher even when it comes to resisting temptation. He was “tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin” (Heb. 4:15). Jesus’ victory over Satan proves that He is the righteous Son of God, mighty to save all who call upon Him.

F.B. Meyer wrote, “There is only one way by which the tempter can be met. He laughs at our good resolutions and ridicules the pledges with which we fortify ourselves. Satan fears only One, He who in the hour of greatest weakness defeated him and who now has been raised far above all principalities and powers to deliver frail and tempted souls. Christ conquered the prince of this world in the days of His flesh and is prepared to do as much again for each of us as we seek His aid” (in “Our Daily Bread,” 1980).

If we trust in Him as Savior and walk in His strength each day, we can overcome temptation when it hits, as surely it will. True worshippers of God are those who do not worship an idol. Let us not make any deals with the devil. No compromise. Follow the plan, whatever the plan God has for us, however painful the plan might be, however deep the suffering and sacrifice, we must serve the only true God and the only one worthy of worship.

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