Was Jesus' Temptation from Within?

Question: Concerning the account of the temptation of Christ in Luke 4:2-13, please explain how this could possibly be the working of Christ’s own mind? Note that in verse 13, after the temptation we are told — “he departed from him for a season”.

Answer: Before we actually attempt to answer your question, it is important to establish a few of the basic principles that are involved in this situation. First of all, we know that Christ was not “an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin”. It is essential that we accept the fact that Jesus bore our same nature, and that the following words from James applied to him as well as to us. “But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death” (James 1:14-15).

Jesus was tempted “like as we are” and it is therefore reasonable to conclude that the account in Luke is our record of at least some of that temptation. Since Adam’s sin resulted in all mankind having an innate tendency to sin, there is no need to be tempted by an outside agent, either for Christ or ourselves, in order for sin to be manifested. The inherent proclivity to sin is ever-present in the nature of all of Adam’s progeny. For this reason, there may be no other logical choice than to accept that it was the process of temptation working in the mind of Christ on that occasion.

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Author: The Advocate

Keywords: Temptation, Yezer Ha-Ra, Yezer Hara, Yetzer Hara, Yetzer Ha-Ra, Evil Inclination, The Evil Inclination, Satan, Evil one, Deliver us from evil, The Evil One, Jesus' temptation, Jesus' temptation in the wilderness, Jesus's temptation, Jesus's temptation in the wilderness, Tempted of the devil, Tempted of Satan, Satan tempts Jesus, The devil tempts Jesus, Tempts Jesus, Christ's temptation, Christ's temptation in the wilderness, Satan tempts Christ, The devil tempts Christ, Tempts Christ, Temptation from within, Wilderness temptation, Temptation in the wilderness, Sin within

Bible reference(s): Matthew 4:1-11, Mark 1:13, Luke 4:2-13

Source: “Question Box,” The Christadelphian Advocate.

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