Identity, Authority & Motives (part 3)
We all do what we do for a reason. We may not know what that reason is but there is always a reason why. Dr. Phil McGraw has ten life laws that he teaches. One of those laws is People Do What Works. His statement is that people do what they do because there is some type of payoff for their action. Either good or bad, they want the payoff. That’s their motive. We all have motives. Some are good, but others are not. Some of our motives are to try to find the shortcut, to take the proverbial, “easy way out.” Jesus had to face this situation in his life. As we look at the final temptation of Jesus, we now see that Jesus was tempted in the arena of motives.
Matthew 4:8-10 (NIV) 8 Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. 9 “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.” 10 Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’”
Jesus had a purpose in coming to the earth. In one place in the Bible He said that He came to seek and to save the lost. In Psalm 2 we see a prophetic word concerning Jesus. We see that He could ask the Father and that the Father would give the nations to Jesus as His inheritance. We also see through Paul’s writings and John’s vision in Revelation that every knee will bow to Jesus, that all nations will proclaim Him as the Lord. In short, Jesus was destined to become the King of kings and the Lord of lords. The Father was going to give the nations of the earth to Jesus.
Life is full of shortcuts, and people are always going to be willing to take them. However, most of the time shortcuts don’t produce quality results. In this temptation Jesus was offered a shortcut. The nations of the world would be His once He was resurrected from the dead. They were His gifts from His father for His obedience. Yet, satan offered Jesus a shortcut to these kingdoms. No death, no cross, no hardships. All He had to do was bow down and worship satan. His motives were being challenged. Was His motive to gain the kingdoms of the world easily or to obey His Father even though it would cost him his life? In conquering this temptation He proved that His motives were to obey the Father.
How about you and I? What are our motives? Why do we do what we do? Are we looking for shortcuts or are we willing to pay the price, even to the point of death? While I doubt that most of us will have to face death, we need to realize what our morals are, what our limits are and how far we will go to protect and honor those convictions. Someone once said that every man has a price. In others words, every man can be bought. Is that true of you? Can you be bought? Jesus couldn’t be bought. His motives were pure. He didn’t take the easy way out. He stayed true to Himself and to His God. I hope that you and I cannot be bought either.
What’s your motives?