Deuteronomy today reminds us that what we give to God is made out from what God had given us. Hence it is God’s due and our obligation. This text also confirms God’s total care for us. The Word of God reminds us of these.
St. Paul today reminds us that the Word is near to us, on our lips and in our hearts. And Jesus clearly tells us that
“one does not live by bread alone, but by every Word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4).
The Spirit of God takes control in leading Jesus in His mission. The wilderness is the immediate preparation ground for Jesus. There, after getting the strength and power from his union with the Father through silence, fasting and penance, Jesus is tested for his identity before he launches his mission.
The devil repeatedly provokes Jesus telling: “If you are the Son of God…” Being the Son of God is a fact of life for Jesus. That is his identity. The devil is questioning that very identity. Jesus repeatedly affirms that Identity by expressing his total oneness with the Word of God. That is, He himself is the Word.
Oneness with God or being the Word of God is not used by Jesus for a privilege or show of power. In fact, Jesus defeats the devil by strictly adhering to the Word, the Scripture. Passing through these temptations Jesus shows us the example for conquering our pride and vanity and the need for sticking to the Word of God. Just like Jesus proves finally by the power of the Word that he is the Son of God, we too are invited to prove the same, prove our identity.
The victory of Jesus came through discarding the craze for power, fame, wealth and other temptations of the world. We too are sons and daughters of God through the adoption and victory won for us by Jesus. We are sons and daughters in the Son and we too have to go through the same trials, tribulations and suffering as Jesus in order to win the final victory of resurrection and life everlasting. We need to get ourselves detached from the world and attached to God. Lent reminds us all these and invites us to fall in line with Jesus in His victory procession.