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Then Jesus. This is the description of the entry into the temptation, and it contains (as a weighty [important] history) many circumstances importing [concerning] great matters, which may be reduced to 7. branches or heads[1].

First, the two champions[2] 1. Christ, and 2. Satan.

3. The leader of Jesus into the lists, who is said to be the holy Ghost.

4. The end, which was the conflict itself, that is, to be tempted.

5. The day of the battel, expressed under the word Then:

6. The lists[3] themselves, that is, the wilderness.

7. Christ his preparation to it, that is, his fasting

I.  [The First Champion, Christ]

First, for the party defendant, Christ, who (as God)[4] give food to every living creature, Psal. 136. 25. and (as God and man) with five loaves & two fishes fed 5000, besides women and children, Matt. 14. 11.

He that is said to be the very meat [food, not animal tissue alone] itself, whereby we live eternally, John. 6.[5]  He is here said to be hungry.[6]

He, before whom thousand thousands are said to minister, & 10000. thousands are said to stand before him, Dan. 7. 10[7] has here for his companions the wild beasts: for so saith Mark. chap 1. 13.

He, to whom the Angels minister, vers. 11. is here assailed with devil, which offer unto him matter of great indignity;

and the indignity which he suffered, leads us to the consideration of the grievousness of our sins, & of the greatness of his love, both which are measured by the greatness of those things he suffered for us; as that he was cast out from among the company of Angels (for so Mark 1:12. hath it) into the Desert, to be a companion of beasts, and so led forth to be tempted; where he suffered in his body hunger, in his soul temptation: what is it else, but a proclaiming of his great love toward us?

As if he should (exulting) say, What is it that shall separate me from the love of men? Shall temptation? shall solitariness? shall hunger? shall wearisome labor and travel? shall watching? shall anguish of mind, and bloody sweat? shall mocks [mocking]? shall whips? shall nailes? shall spears? shall principalities?

That we also might use the same challenge which Paul does in the 8. Chapter of his Epistle to the Romans the 35. verse, “What shall separate vs from the love of Christ? shall tribulation? shall anguish? or persecution?” These two profitable points grow out of the consideration of the person of the defendant.


He introduces Christ’s participation in the Temptation through a series of contrasts:

He feeds others; he himself is hungry.

He is the king of all; he is alone with wild beasts.

He is from a throne; he is in the wilderness.

He is ministered to by angels; he is assaulted by devils.

This contrast proves: (1) The greatness of our sin; and (2) the greatness of his love.

He then draws rhetorically upon an exaltation at the end of Romans 8 wherein Paul says that nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ:

Romans 8:31–38 (ESV)

31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? 33 Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. 34 Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? 36 As it is written,

                  “For your sake we are being killed all the day long;

      we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.”

37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.


II. [The Second Champion, the Devil]

Secondly, the party assailant is the Devil, who is so called, by reason of his foul mouth in defaming: for so does the word Diabolus import[8], whereby we have occasion to detest the sin of infamy: and it shows what name they deserve, and how to be esteemed of, in whom that quality is found.

S. Paule 2. Tim. 3. 3[9] foretold, that in the latter days there should be men devils, foul mouthed men, evil speakers: and 1. Tim. 3. 11[10] he speaks of women devils because of their calumnious speeches.

In the tongue wherein Christ spoke these words, namely the Syriac[11], the fittest word that he could find to signify the devil’s name, is a word that signifes Diuulgator: so that a publisher of infamous reports[12], is good Syriac for the devil; as when a man lightly conveys a reproach, either forging it himself by misconstruction, or credulously receiving it upon the report of others[13], and then is not sorry for his brothers ill, Mat. 5. 22. but rather insults [him]; not considering that he himself may fall into the like temptations, Gal 6. 1[14] and so becomes puffed up, 1. Cor. 5. 2[15] and at last falls a-blazing his brothers imperfections, 3. John 10[16] these come right to the devil’s quality they take upon them the abetting of the devil’s quarrel.

It is the Devil’s occupation to defame us first with God, as he did Iob, as if he had been an hypocrite, and had served God only for gain, Iob. 1. 9[17] and so stands he continually accusing us, Apoc. 12. 10[18] and he also defames God with us, as if he were a God that did envy our good, Gen. 3. 1. and so he here defames God to Christ, as if he were careless in providing for him, in suffering him to be hungry.

And from these two defamations proceeds all evil whatsoever, as well that which the Divines [theologians] call Malum poenae [power of evil] as Job 1. 12[19] accusing Job, that he would curse God if he handled him roughly, and so got power over his goods: as that which they call Malum culpae [fault/responsibility of evil] For his defaming God with us, was the cause of all sin[20]: and everywhere still we see he labors to persuade us, that God is an unkind God; that so we may burst forth into those terms, This good did I get at Gods hand, 2. Ki. 6. 33. to wit, hunger.[21]

To this does he tempt Christ vers. 3. And as to desperation, so sometimes to the contrary, presumption, as vers. 6. Cast thyself down, &c. by bringing us to have a base conceit of God[22], defaming him as if he were a God of clots, not to be reckoned of[23], as if he were a man to wait upon us, and to take us up as oft as we list to throw ourselves down, that we may say in our hearts, as they that were frozen in their dregs did, Sophon. 1. 12 He neither does good nor hurt, it is all one to serve him, and not to serve him. He tells vs (as verse. 9[24]) that he will give us all this, if we will fall down and worship him, as though he were very liberal [generous] in rewards, & as though God were unkind or ungrateful, not once regarding vs for all our service, but suffers us even to starve.[25]

Which brought men to that passe, as to say, Malach. 3. 14. that It is but in vain to serve God, what gain is in his service?[26]

If he [the Devil] cannot prevail this way against us [convince us], then he will try another way: for, when (seeing that this temptation succeeded not) the devil left Christ, he departed not for altogether, but went to come again (as appeares in the fourth of Luke, verse. 13. he departed for a time. Christ was too cunning [smart, able] for him in disputing [responding to the Devil’s temptations] he meant therefore to take another course: for as James notes, chap 1. vers. 14[27] there be two sorts of temptations, one by enticement, as a serpent; another by violence, as a lion; if he cannot prevail as a serpent, he will play the lion. He had also another power at Christ in the garden, the power of darkness, Luc. 22. 53. there he bruised his heel.


Andrews uses the introduction of the Devil as an opportunity to consider the nature of slander and sin. He is not offering an objective examination of the Devil, but is introducing the Devil as our enemy too. Recall the purpose of this study is in part to protect us against our own assault from the Devil.

He uses slander as a basic sin which gives rise to all other sins. He draws this consideration from the name of the Devil which means “slanderer.”

He begins by discussing the sin of slander among human beings, and note that is a devilish thing. It is slander to create a falsehood, and it is slander to repeat a falsehood.

From this he traces the arch sin back to slander. The Devil slandered God in the Garden, alleging that God had lied to them. This led to the sin of Adam which lead to all other sins. Since that time, the Devil’s work has been two-fold: First, to slander us to God. This is under the name “Satan” which means “Accuser”. Second, the Devil slanders God to us.

But such work does not exhaust the Devil’s resources. If he can trick us or entice us, he will threaten us.

It is interesting that a single word in Greek is translated both “trial” and “temptation.” A temptation is an enticement. A trial is a stressful circumstance which pushes us to sin.

[1] A common feature of sermons and discussions in this time was the division of any subject into its various parts. If you were to discuss automobiles, you might divide all cars into oil or electric. You would then divide oil into gasoline and diesel, and so on.

[2] Champion here merely means the combatants. We do not need to read a positive sense into the word “champion” as victor or best party.

[3] Here, by “lists” Andrews means the location of the combat. The “lists” narrowly refers to the boundaries of the place of a joust.

[4] He here asserts the divinity of Christ.

[5] John 6:52–56 (ESV) “52 The Jews then disputed among themselves, saying, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” 53 So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day. 55 For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink. 56 Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him.”

[6] Andrews does not provide the reference, but he is here referring to: Matthew 4:1–2 (ESV) “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.”

[7] Daniel 7:9–12 (ESV)

9 “As I looked,

                  thrones were placed,

      and the Ancient of Days took his seat;

                  his clothing was white as snow,

      and the hair of his head like pure wool;

                  his throne was fiery flames;

      its wheels were burning fire.

            10       A stream of fire issued

      and came out from before him;

                  a thousand thousands served him,

      and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him;

                  the court sat in judgment,

      and the books were opened.

11 “I looked then because of the sound of the great words that the horn was speaking. And as I looked, the beast was killed, and its body destroyed and given over to be burned with fire. 12 As for the rest of the beasts, their dominion was taken away, but their lives were prolonged for a season and a time.

[8] The name “Devil” comes from the Greek meaning slanderer. For example, “Slanderers he hated more than thieves, deeming loss of friends graver than loss of money.” Xenophon, Xenophon in Seven Volumes, 7, trans. E. C. Marchant and G. W. Bowersock (Medford, MA: Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA; William Heinemann, Ltd., London., 1925). The word translated “slanderers” being the plural of “diabolos.” If you would like to check, “τούς γε μὴν διαβόλους μᾶλλον ἢ τοὺς κλέπτας ἐμίσει.” Xenophon, “Xenophontis Opera Omnia, Vol. 5” (Medford, MA: Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1920).

[9] 2 Timothy 3:1–3 (ESV) “But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good ….”

[10] 1 Timothy 3:11 (ESV) “Their wives likewise must be dignified, not slanderers, but sober-minded, faithful in all things.”

[11] Aramaic, not Syriac.

[12] Someone spreading slanderous news.

[13] Slander can come from one of two directions: (1) it can be made up by the speaker; or (2) the speaker can repeat something he has heard. Andrews further defines the one repeating as one who does not

[14] Galatians 6:1 (ESV)  “Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted.”

[15] 1 Corinthians 5:2 (ESV) “And you are arrogant! Ought you not rather to mourn? Let him who has done this be removed from among you.” The Geneva has “puffed-up” for arrogant, “And ye are puffed up & have not rather sorowed, that he which hathe done this dede, might be put from among you.”

[16] 3 John 10 (ESV)

10 So if I come, I will bring up what he is doing, talking wicked nonsense against us. And not content with that, he refuses to welcome the brothers, and also stops those who want to and puts them out of the church.

[17] Job 1:7–10 (ESV) “7 The LORD said to Satan, “From where have you come?” Satan answered the LORD and said, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking up and down on it.” 8 And the LORD said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil?” 9 Then Satan answered the LORD and said, “Does Job fear God for no reason? 10 Have you not put a hedge around him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land.”

[18] Revelation 12:10 (ESV) “And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, ‘Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God.’”

[19] Job 1:12 (ESV) “And the Lord said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your hand. Only against him do not stretch out your hand.” So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord.” The evil one having power to act.

[20] In the Garden, Satan lies about God and says that God is lying to the couple. Thus, Satan slanders God and from that slander comes all other sin.

[21] The king of Damascus had surrounded the royal city of Samaria. This led to a famine in the city. The king blamed God and blamed the prophet Elisha: 2 Kings 6:32–33 (ESV)

32 Elisha was sitting in his house, and the elders were sitting with him. Now the king had dispatched a man from his presence, but before the messenger arrived Elisha said to the elders, “Do you see how this murderer has sent to take off my head? Look, when the messenger comes, shut the door and hold the door fast against him. Is not the sound of his master’s feet behind him?” 33 And while he was still speaking with them, the messenger came down to him and said, “This trouble is from the LORD! Why should I wait for the LORD any longer?”

[22] An evil or bad idea about God.

[23] As if God were a stupid man fit for no other job than to wait upon us.

[24] Matthew 4:8–9 (ESV)

Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to him, “All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.”

[25] When the Devil asks Jesus to make bread from stones, there is the implied slander that God does not care if Jesus starves to death.

[26] Malachi 3:13–15 (ESV)

13 “Your words have been hard against me, says the Lord. But you say, ‘How have we spoken against you?’ 14 You have said, ‘It is vain to serve God. What is the profit of our keeping his charge or of walking as in mourning before the Lord of hosts? 15 And now we call the arrogant blessed. Evildoers not only prosper but they put God to the test and they escape.’”

[27] James 1:14 (ESV)  “But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire.”