Help me, Lord, to live this coming sacred time through a mature reflection on Your generosity; the need for a radical change

1st Sunday of Lent

Dwt. 26:4-10; Psalm 90; Rom. 10:8-13; Lq. 4:1-13

Read: Filled with the Holy Spirit, Jesus left the Jordan and was led by the Spirit through the wilderness, being tempted there by the devil for forty days. During that time, he ate nothing and at the end he was hungry. Then the devil said to him: “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to turn into a loaf.” But Jesus replied: ‘Scripture says: ‘Man does not live on bread alone’.”

Then leading him to a height, the devil showed him in a moment of time all the kingdoms of the world and said to him: “I will give your all this power and the glory of these kingdom, for it has been committed to me and I give it to anyone I choose. Worship me, then, and it shall be yours.” But Jesus answered him: “Scripture says: ‘You must worship the Lord your God, and serve Him alone’.”

Then the devil led Jesus to Jerusalem and made him stand on the parapet of the Temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said to him, “throw yourself down from here, for scripture says: ‘He will put his angels in charge of you to guard you’, and again: ‘They will hold you up on their hands in case you hurt your foot against a stone’.”

But Jesus answered him: “It has been said: ‘You must not put the Lord your God to the test’.” Having exhausted all these ways of tempting him, the devil left him to return at the appointed time.

Reflect: The narration of these three temptations represents a symbolic summary of Jesus’ fight against evil, a struggle which he had in every moment of his life. The temptations faced by Christ, although seemingly different from the temptations with which we ourselves are confronted, teach us about the nature of our temptations so that we can guard ourselves against them.

Firstly, the devil tempts us and attacks us in our most weak points. The temptations would be tailor-made for us.

Secondly, the devil times well the moment of his temptations. In Jesus’ case, the devil knew that at that moment, Jesus was not so keen to obey his Father, once physically he was weak. In the same manner, the devil seeks moments when we are most weak.

These three temptations show the root of every temptation that we ourselves confront: an inclination to put God aside; that we consider Him of secondary importance or out of date; to rely only on our strength and abilities; and to figure a world without God. Today’s gospel is an appropriate start to the Lenten period. It shows us how we should sustain Jesus’ experience against Evil. It also shows us how to sustain Jesus’ experience when he won the battle against Evil. Together with Christ, during our trials during Lent, let us share also the triumph of Easter. 

Pray: Help me, Lord, to live this coming sacred time through a mature reflection on Your generosity; the need for a radical change.

Act: During this Lenten period let us listen, with more zeal, to God’s Word; recognise our faults and repent for these with the utmost sincerity; make acts of deprivation and penance; increase prayer and closeness to God; help more generously all those who are in need.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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