The First 15

Wednesday March 29, 2023

by Thomas Mitchell


Scripture Reading

Luke 4:1-12
Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, left the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry. The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.” Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone.’” The devil led him up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world.

And he said to him, “I will give you all their authority and splendor; it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. If you worship me, it will all be yours.”

Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.’”

The devil led him to Jerusalem and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down from here. For it is written: “‘He will command his angels concerning you to guard you carefully; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’”

Jesus answered, “It is said: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’”


The word for Jesus “answered,” in Greek, literally means that Jesus “responded to the present, now, current situation.” In other words, Jesus was in a moment of challenge, and he had an immediate response.
Delayed responses to God mean disobedience, according to the Scriptures. Delayed responses to the devil mean acquiescence.

In the former case, a delay in obedience means that we are trusting ourselves more than God and believe that delaying a response of obedience will enable us to escape suffering in our discipleship (the second temptation all over again).

In the latter case, a delay when facing temptation means that we are trusting ourselves more than is wise, allowing the enemy to get a foothold in our hearts.We are called to turn from evil (Ps. 34:14, 37:27; 1 Peter 3:11), to run from evil, so we don’t give it a second chance to grab ahold of our desires.

Second Peter 2:20 suggest that if we delay in refusing what the enemy is offering, we can do virtually irreparable damage to our souls: “If they have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and are again entangled in it and are overcome, they are worse off at the end than they were at the beginning.”

We can recount circumstances in our lives when we failed to answer, quickly, in the moment, and have either faced repercussions we wish we had avoided or missed
opportunities to convey God’s love in a powerful way.

When God speaks, answer quickly. When the devil speaks, answer quickly. A delay can cost us more than time.

Can you recount a circumstance where you delayed obedience, and experienced a missed opportunity? What happened and how did you return to obedience?

Closing Prayer

Lord of the Wild, we fear in moments of obedience or temptation that we will be out of control. Minister to our spirits so our trust leads our indecision and lead us to faithfulness. In Jesus’s name, amen.

Songs for the Wilderness

Today we will sing “Christ Be All Around Me” by All Sons and Daughters which you can find here. Subscribe to our Spotify playlist featuring all of our Songs for the Wilderness here.

First 15 through the season of Lent is adapted from Jesus in the Wild: Lessons of Calling for Life in the World available through Seedbed. If you or your small group are interested in using this resource for your Lenten study, you can find more information here or send an email to

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