While Jesus is not mentioned by name in this passage, it is believed that these verses describe a time when Jesus was tempted by Satan. Because this passage leaves a lot of important information out, one has to look to other gospels to have any understanding of this story. This is especially interesting considering the fact that early believers would not have been able to check other sources. Not only was Mark considered earliest written gospel (Dating of the Gospels), but also it is my understanding that early Christian communities typically only used had one gospel they followed. Even when this passage is read with other gospel accounts in mind, the story of the temptation of Christ brings up more questions than answers.
(1) Assuming that the “Spirit” is the Holy Spirit and “him” is Jesus, how did the Holy Sprit lead him anywhere? Aren’t they the same being?
(2) If Jesus is actually God and has angels waiting on him, then what could Satan possibly offer him that is tempting?
(3) If Jesus was actually tempted to commit a sin, didn’t he sin in his heart? If so, isn’t that the same as sinning? After all, according to the New Testament, Jesus said that anyone who lusts has committed adultery.
Discuss: I would love to hear from you. What do you think of this passage? If you are a Bible-believing Christian, how might you go about answering these questions.
Mark 1:12 And the Spirit immediately drove him out into the wilderness. 13 He was in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan; and he was with the wild beasts; and the angels waited on him.
Harper Bibles (2011-11-22). NRSV Bible with the Apocrypha (Kindle Locations 67696-67697). HarperCollins. Kindle Edition.
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