Introduce kids to the Savior of sinners. This is a series of audio podcasts for kids who want to meet with Jesus by using Meeting with Jesus: A Bible Reading Plan for Kids (RHB). Listen to previous episodes here.
Jennifer’s soccer team had reached the play-off semi-finals. By half-time, they were 3-0 up. But the coach was worried. She saw that the players thought they had already won the game and were in the final. She tried to calm them down, stop their premature celebrations, and keep them fighting hard the whole game. But she could tell that they weren’t listening. Within ten minutes of the restart, the score was 3-2 and just before the end of the half, it went to 3-3.
Jennifer and her team-mates trudged off the park to prepare for extra time. They had worked so hard all season and now they felt defeated and wanted to give up. If they were over-confident before, they were under-confident now.
The coach realized she had to inspire them if they were to have any chance of winning in extra time. “You’ve all worked so hard through the year. You’ve trained and trained, practiced and practiced. Now, just one more big effort and all that hard work will be rewarded. Come on, think of the reward. You’ll be in the final and all the hard work, sweat and tears will have been worth it.”
In one game, Jennifer’s team had fallen into two dangerous attitudes. They were too confident at half-time. They had lost confidence at full-time. They thought they couldn’t lose at half time. They thought they couldn’t win at full-time. Over-confidence and under-confidence. These were two dangers that Jesus faced as well in Luke 4:9-15. He had beaten the devil’s temptations three times and might have been tempted to over-confidence by his wins or tempted to give up because the battle was just so hard.
VICTORIES OVER TEMPTATION ARE SHORT (13)
- The Devil gives up for a time: “And when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from him.”
- The Devil is looking for opportunities: “He departed from him until an opportune time.”
Jesus is reminded here that despite beating the devil three times, he is still in a battle. The Devil is still trying to beat him and he must not drop his guard or get over-confident.
VICTORIES OVER TEMPTATION ARE REWARDED (14-15)
- Jesus was empowered by God: “And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit to Galilee.”
- Jesus was used by God: “And he taught in their synagogues, being glorified by all.”
Jesus is encouraged here that fighting temptation is worth it because victories will be rewarded by God. The battle is worth it. The effort will be repaid.
Let’s learn from Jesus’s victories over temptation. When we beat temptation, don’t get over-confident. When we are lacking confidence and ready to give up, remember the reward for victory.
You want to know the final result don’t you? Jennifer’s team won 4-3 in extra time and went on to beat their greatest rival in the final to win the State championship. The coach was so happy to see them with their medals. But she was even happier that they had learned about two massive dangers in life: the dangers of over-confidence and under-confidence. And they had learned two massive lessons: Never stop fighting and never forget the reward.