March 25, 2016 Matt Pennock

Two Very Different Ways of Handling Scripture—Satan’s vs. Jesus’s

There are two noticeably predominate ways of approaching the Bible within the whole of Christendom. Both are based on two starkly opposing attitudes towards the Scripture. One sees the Bible as the very life-giving sustenance for daily consumption and a pursuit in and of itself. The other sees the Scripture not as life-giving sustenance but only as a means to their own interests and pursuits.

The one attitude holds the Scripture as the most valuable communication to humanity. The other holds Scripture as less valuable than some other ideological communication within humanity.

The story of Jesus and Satan in the wilderness is perhaps the most illustrative of these two attitudes at work:

Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.

And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.”

But he answered, “It is written, “‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.'”

Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written, “‘He will command his angels concerning you,’ and “‘On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.'”

Jesus said to him, “Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.'”

Mat 4:1-7 ESV

In this story both Jesus and Satan are battling over the authority, validity, and proper attitude toward the Scriptures.

Who do you think is seeing the Bible as the very life-giving sustenance for daily consumption and a pursuit in and of itself? Who is viewing it only as a means to their own interests and pursuits?