Do you notice who was taking the initiative here? It wasn’t the devil. It was the Holy Spirit. God was the One entirely sovereign over the events that unfold as this chapter continues. His Spirit, descended on Jesus in baptism, led Him into the desert. It was time. Newly endued with power from on high, He had to face temptation. He had to experience what all of us fellow humans go through. This was necessary for Him to become a merciful High Priest.
You see, the Father’s purpose lay in the tempting Jesus endured. His ability to sympathize with our weaknesses was a crucial part of God’s plan for redeeming humanity. The devil, wickedly drawn to Jesus in His moment of great vulnerability, no doubt believed he was the one taking the initiative. Instead, he was playing right into God’s plan.
When you experience spiritual warfare, remember this. When it seems like hell is breaking loose, call this to mind. The One running the show is God. No matter what comes against you, His purposes are prevailing now, and will unfailingly continue to prevail. You are in the palm of His hand, and nothing can take you from there. Daddy will even send His angels to minister to you when you need it, as He did for His Son in this story (v. 11). And, like Jesus, you will come through this trial stronger and more victorious than ever. Nothing in all of creation can stop the indescribably good plans the Father has for you!
Have you taken time to meditate on the reality that Jesus profoundly sympathizes with your weaknesses? That He gets it? That His heart stirs with compassion for you in your struggle? That He is right there ready to help?