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Date: 22 October, 2020
Text: Luke 4:1-15
Title: Rules of Engagement
ill. In military terms - Rules of engagement (ROE) are the internal rules or directives among military forces (including individuals) that define the circumstances, conditions, degree, and manner in which the use of force, or actions which might be construed as provocative, may be applied. They provide authorization for and/or limits on, among other things, the use of force and the employment of certain specific capabilities.
example: the US gave it's forces Rules of engagement for Operation Provide Relief in Somalia Relief Operations.
A. You have the right to use force to defend yourself against attack or threats of attack.
B. Hostile fire may be returned effectively and promptly to stop a hostil act.
C. When U.S. forces are attacked by unarmed hostile elements, movs and/or rioters, U.S. forces should use the minimum force necessary under the circumstances and proportional to the threat.
D. You may not seize the peroprty of others to accomplish your mission.
E. Detention of civilians is authorized for security reasons or in self defence.
exp. This was a relief operation and yet there were very real dangers.
ill. Book by Kenneth Allard - Somalia Operations: Lessons Learned.
"This book is respectfully dedicated to the memories of Master Sergeant Gary I. Gordon and Sergeant First Class Randall D. Shughart, United States Army, who were killed in action on October 3, 1993 in Mogadishu, Somalia. For "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of life above and beyond the call of duty" while defending their embattled Task Force Ranger comrades, these soldiers were posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor on May 23, 1994."
Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
Foreward of the book - Ervin J. Rokke, Lieutenant General, US Air Force
"Lessons are only truly learned when we incorporate them into our planning, doctrine, tactics, and training—a process which can take some time."
exp. I imagine that future rules of engagement came about and developed in the same way. Lessons were learned and they were incorporated into planning, doctrine, tactics and training.
text: Luke 4, Is Jesus temptation in the wilderness.
message this morning: The rules of engagement.
WE NEED TO FOLLOW THE SPIRITUAL RULES OF ENGAGEMENT.
question: What lessons can we learn that we can incorporate into our planning, doctrine, tactics and training?
We need to follow the spiritual rules of engagement. (Several short points this evening.)
I. Don't let your guard down after spiritual victories.
1 And Jesus being full of the Holy Ghost returned from Jordan,
exp. A great event has just taken place in the life of our Lord.
ill. In Luke 3 we find John the Baptist baptising in the wilderness
21 Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened,
22 And the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon him, and a voice came from heaven, which said, Thou art my beloved Son; in thee I am well pleased.
23 And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age,
exp. Jesus has humbly been baptised by John, God's Spirit has visibly descended upon Him and God the Father has audibly spoken.
note: This is a very significant point in our Lord's life as it signals the beginning of his earthly ministry. John the Baptist has identified Jesus as the Messiah.
question: Should we be surprised that attack follows great victory?
ill. Elijah on Mt. Carmel prayed down fire from heaven. In the following chapter he is fleeing for his life as Queen Jezebel has sworn to kill him.
app. Have you had a great victory? Great! But, be on guard! DON'T LET YOUR GUARD DOWN AFTER SPIRITUAL VICTORIES.
II. Don't think being spiritual keeps you from being tempted.
....and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness,
note: Jesus was led by God's Spirit into the wilderness, But the temptation was not of God.
James 1:13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:
exp. I suppose someone could think, I'm a spiritual person, I don't have to be on guard against sin.
ill. Jesus was always sinless, always obedient, always serving.... nobody has been perfectly spiritual like our Lord. Despite his perfect spirituality as a spiritual man he faced temptation.
ill. Paul has some good advice. 1Co 10:12 Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall. 13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.
exp. Paul's warning is - you think you are spiritual - TAKE HEED LEST YOU FALL!
ill. A pro footballer can begin to think he's got it and forget he needs to be on guard and practice the fundamentals of football.
exp. He has to take heed to stay at that level of play.
app. Are you doing well spiritually. Praise God! But, be on guard. You can fall if you don't take heed. DON'T THINK BEING SPIRITUAL KEEPS YOU FROM BEING TEMPTED.
III. Don't expect Christianity to be easy.
2 Being forty days tempted of the devil.
exp. Jesus wasn't entering into an easy skirmish with the enemy. He was going to go through an intense season of spiritual warfare. (We ought not expect Christianity to be easy.)
ill. Doing my internship in Tucson, AZ. It was a 3 day drive from Wisconsin to Tucson. If I remember right, I arrived on Saturday at my host's home. Sunday morning I arrived to find out that the youth pastor was in the hospital with kidney stones. I was going to teach SS. I had one message with me. (Girl - "baptism with fire.")
exp. Our Christian experience may be a baptism with fire at times. (Wow - that as tough!)
app. A new believer can quickly face seasons of intense warfare. It can be dissolutioning. However, every Christian ought to expect prolonged seasons of intense spiritual warfare.
IV. Don't close your eyes to areas of obvious attack.
And in those days he did eat nothing: and when they were ended, he afterward hungered.
exp. Jesus was hungry. His flesh had not just a want but a need.
ill. My brother has done some long fasts. I think his longest is 27 days. He says, "When your body signals hunger you have to respond or your can starve."
exp. Jesus wasn't just hungry. Jesus was needy.
James 1:14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.
ill.The desire for food is a strong temptation. Esau was tempted in his area of weakness (same desire) and failed miserably despising his birthright.
exp. Jesus was aware that Satan would attack him at this weak point.
ill. A Christian young person who needs friends - could face temptation to fit in with the world.
- A person struggling to pay their bills - could face temptation to cheat on their taxes.
- A person struggling in a relationship - could face tempation to anger.
- A person who has failed in an area (besetting sin) - will be tested in that area again.
Heb 12:1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
app. We do well to identify areas of obvious attack and fortify them against attack (prayer, Scripture, cutting off the flesh....)
V. Don't forget that sin begins where faith ends.
3 And the devil said unto him, If thou be the Son of God, command this stone that it be made bread. 4 And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.
exp. Jesus said - I'm not going to do it. I'm going to take God at His word and trust Him to feed me.
exp. You may wonder - why is it wrong for Jesus to make the rock bread so that he can eat?
1.) It's a temptation from Satan to PROVE who he is.
2.) Spiritual gifts are not to be exploited for fleshly gratification.
3.) It's unbelief in God's ability to provide.
note: At the heart of sin is unbelief in God. His truth and His ability to supply man's need.
ill. Abraham - taking Hagar as his wife. (God had promised a son.....through faith.)
ill. Israel - God is distant (unbelief) let's make the golden calf. God isn't going to provide food - let's go back to Egypt. (unbelief) God won't defeat our enemies. (unbelief.)
ill. David was victorious over Saul when he committed Saul to God. David fell into sin when David stopped trusting God. (adultery and murder followed.)
app. The biggest problem with sin is that it is UNBELIEF IN GOD. Sin begins where faith ends.
VI. Don't put your sword down.
ill. Sword drills in primary school.
4 And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.
8 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind me, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.
12 And Jesus answering said unto him, It is said, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.
exp. Jesus was victorious and Jesus always used the truth of God's Word.
ill. Jesus in his temptation faced the three areas of fleshly desire listed in God's Word.
1Jn 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
exp. The first temptation - lust of the flesh, food
The second temptation - lust of the eyes, kingdoms
The third temptation - pride of life, prove who you are
ill. When man fell in the garden, he faced the same three temptations.
lust of the flesh - good for food.
lust of the eyes - saw that the tree was good for food.
pride of life - tree to be desired to make one wise.... as gods knowing good and evil.
exp. Eve failed and Eve didn't effectively use the sword of God's Word. She misquoted God and she didn't continue to say, "God said...."
app. Satan continues to use - the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life.
DON'T PUT YOUR SWORD DOWN.
VII. Don't believe Satanic advertisements.
5 And the devil, taking him up into an high mountain, shewed unto him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.
6 And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it.
7 If thou therefore wilt worship me, all shall be thine.
exp. Satan is a liar, but there will always be truth in his lies. He has been given some limited power and domain. But, his kingdom is corrupt and will be completely overthrown.
ill. To join Satan is like in WW2 joining Hitler because Britain was going to give you the lowest rank but Hitler would make you an officer.
exp. Who would join such a wicked man just for what he could personally TEMPORARILY gain.
Psa 84:10 For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.
app. Satan's advertisement is false. Those who believe him join the greatest most wicked loser ever. DON'T BELIEVE SATAN'S ADVERTISEMENTS.
VIII. Don't seek to prove yourself to others.
3 And the devil said unto him, If thou be the Son of God,
9 And he brought him to Jerusalem, and set him on a pinnacle of the temple, and said unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down from hence:
exp. Satan knew Jesus was God, but he was daring him to prove himself in pride.
note: Many is the young person scarred physically or spiritually because they proudly tried to prove themselves.
ill. Sam Ballard - young rugby player - dared to eat a garden slug, it had a deady worm that ultimately took his life.
app. Be on guard against sin and the dange of sin - DON'T SEEK TO PROVE YOURSELF TO OTHERS.
IX. Don't believe Satan especially when He quotes Scripture.
10 For it is written, He shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee:
11 And in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.
12 And Jesus answering said unto him, It is said, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.
exp. Satan has a way of making sin spiritual. The temptation is - God says this in His Word - if you believe it - prove it.
exp. Jesus answer is that we don't tempt God by our folly.
ill. A pastor whose father died within seven minutes of being bitten by a snake has himself had to have emergency treatment after suffering the same injury. Cody Coots asked his congregation to take him to the mountaintop where God would judge whether he lives or dies. However, a defiant follower takes him to hospital instead where doctors told him the snake came close to severing the temporal artery, which would almost certainly kill him.
exp. Satan has a way of making folly look spiritual.
ill. Alcohol is ok - After all Timothy was told to take a little wine for his stomaches sake.
exp. The Bible says, "Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.
ill. Don't preach against that sin - God said not to judge! (That means not to pronounce damnation.)
Heb 5:14 But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.
app. DON'T BELIEVE SATAN ESPECIALLY WHEN HE QUOTES SCRIPTURE.
X. Don't think that the tempter will never go away.
13 And when the devil had ended all the temptation, he departed from him for a season.
exp. Jesus had been in an intense battle, but this specific battle ends for a little while as Satan departs.
question: Have you ever been in a time of trial and thought, this is just not going to go away? Many times those times of heaviness are spiritual battles.
ill. In college I had a burden that I just could not get rid of.... I well remember the day God took it away. I can't explain how, but that burden was no longer there.
app. We can feel like it is never going to end, but we ought to be confident that it will end.
James 4:7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
Psa 30:5 For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.
DON'T THINK THE TEMPTER WILL NEVER GO AWAY.
XI. Don't forget that you can be victorious over every temptation.
14 And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee: and there went out a fame of him through all the region round about.
ill. I'm not a coffee shop theologian - It was never my joy to sit around arguing what if questions from the Bible - I'm just kind of simple in my thoughts about God's Word.
BUT REGARDING THE HUMANITY OF JESUS I HAVE SOME SIMPLE QUESTIONS.
question: Do you believe that Jesus fully became a man? Yes
Did he have a corrupt nature? No - He was like Adam and Eve before they sinned (Praise God.)
Could he have sinned? (How is temptation tempation if you can't sin.) If you think not, why did He give Himself to such great effort to overcome temptation?
ill. In the Garden of Eden - he sweat drops of blood resisting Satan.
Heb 12: 2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
3 For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.
4 Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.
exp. Jesus fought against every temptation victoriously. Jesus teaches us that we can live in victory over every temptation. 1Co 10:13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.
app. Are you living in victory or are you living in defeat? DON'T FORGET YOU CAN BE VICTORIOUS OVER EVERY TEMPTATION.
XII. Don't stop serving God just because you have struggled against temptation.
15 And he taught in their synagogues, being glorified of all.
16 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read.
exp. Temptation of itself is not sin. Sin is sin. Jesus never sinned, but Jesus struggled against temptation.
saying "Accept by the grace of God, there go I." We ought to humbly realize that we can commit any sin.
Gal 6:1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.
exp. You could think, I'll never be tempted with that. But, you could be and you had better be on guard against that temptation.
exp. Satan has a lie that is something like this - IF YOU WERE A GOOD PERSON YOU WOULDN'T BE TEMPTED BY THAT AND BECAUSE YOU STRUGGLE AGAINST THAT YOU CAN'T SERVE GOD.
app. If that lie were true, nobody could serve God. Anybody who is serving God is someone who is doing battle against very real temptation.
DON'T STOP SERVING GOD JUST BECAUSE YOU HAVE STRUGGLED AGAINST TEMPTATION.
conclusion: The military have Rules of Engagement for their missions. I like what Lieutenant Colonel Rokke said, ""Lessons are only truly learned when we incorporate them into our planning, doctrine, tactics, and training—a process which can take some time."
We can learn a lot from Jesus succesful engagement with the enemy Satan. From his battle we can develop some rules of engagement.
1.) Dont' let your guard down after spiritual victories.
2.) Don't think being spiritual keeps you from being tempted.
3.) Don't expect Christianity to be easy.
4.) Don't close your eyes to areas of obvious attack.
5.) Don't forget that sin begins where faith ends.
6.) Don't put your Sword down.
7.) Don't believe Satanic advertisements.
8.) Don't seek to prove yourself to others.
9.) Don't believe Satan especially when he quotes Scripture.
10.) Don't think that the tempter will never go away.
11.) Don't forget that you can be victorious over every temptation.
12.) Don't stop serving God just because you have struggled with temptation.