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But He was also curiously stronger, when the tempter came to Jesus.

Devil: If You are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.

Jesus (quoting Deuteronomy): It is written, “Man does not live by bread alone. Rather, he lives on every word that comes from the mouth of the Eternal One.”[a]

The point, of course, is not that Jesus couldn’t have turned these stones to bread. A little later in the story He can make food appear when He needs to. But Jesus doesn’t work miracles out of the blue, for no reason, for show or proof or spectacle. He works them in intimate, close places; He works them to meet people’s needs and to show them the way to the Kingdom.

Then the devil took Jesus to the holy city, Jerusalem, and he had Jesus stand at the very highest point in the holy temple.

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Footnotes

  1. 4:4 Deuteronomy 8:3

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