If Christ’s temptation lasted for 40 days and nights, what do we do with Matthew’s account?
This question weighed on my mind during my Monday and Wednesday morning walks. If I’m listening correctly, it is both simple and not…
Clearly, there is an aspect of type in these — a form of parable with each representing exactly what people have been writing about for centuries. But, additionally, each also reflects on one or more critical ordinances in the life of the Savior. The bread seems reasonably obvious. The temptation to receive all things maps easily as a substitute for Christ’s eventual ascension. Casting oneself down from the pinnacle of the temple seems like it might map to His descension. And yet…. It seems more complex and convoluted than that. Is there an implied mockery in the fact that the atonement was going to be a great deal more difficult than a stubbed toe? Is it also implied that people would quite naturally be watching this unnatural event, and therefore be driven to deify God? So many things went through my mind.
All of this appears to once again revolve around the capacity to understand “one.” One temptation juxtaposed against one life, one path, one will, one creation. One, in its most grand, most glorious, and most incomprehensible nature is to be reduced to three simple narratives that even a child could grasp (and yet not).
Given who we believe Christ was (and is), why wouldn’t he want the power, influence, and resources to bless the lives of all mankind? He could end the conflict and with it all the pain, suffering, greed, etc. He could accomplish what He came to do: save mankind. What’s not to love? It’s not like He would be destroying agency; there would be no compulsion. Right? :- ) Riiiiiiiiiiiiiight.
While it is much more expansive than this, this is sufficient. I hope I’m not the only one that finds comprehending even the smallest component of this defies capability.