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40th Friday

Jesus' Triumph Over Satan

Jesus fasted for forty days and at the end of the fast he was tempted by the devil. On the 40th day of the Great Lent which is always a Friday, the church commemorates the tempting of Jesus and his triumph over Satan. In the Gospel we see that after his baptism, Jesus was led up into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil (St. Matthew 4: 1). We who are baptized into the Lord should not be surprised if we are also tempted like him. We should not be defeated when temptations come, but triumph over Satan; like Jesus we are also aided by the Spirit.We also see that Jesus fasted to overcome temptation, giving us an example of our own power and limitations. There is also another important lesson for us from the Gospel reading for the 40th Friday. In Matthew 4: 6 we can see satan quoting the Holy Scripture (especially from Psalm 91:  11 - 12) . You can also see that the satan is mis-interpreting the Scripture. This should be a fair warning to us, who have received the true faith and the correct interpretation of the Scripture, not to fall into the trap, of someone quoting the Scripture and challenging the true faith of Orthodoxy. After all even the Satan quotes from the Scripture.

Readings:

  • Before Holy Qurbana
                      • Holy Qurbana
                      • Movie
                        Temptation of Jesus and his Triumph over satan: from the movie "Visible Bible: Matthew" (1993)
                        What I like about this movie clip is that the satan is represented by a beautiful woman dressed in red. In most christian art and iconography, the satan is represented either by a serpent or by a dark ugly man with two horns. Satan is bodiless and in our life can manifest in many ways. It could be a very beautiful woman or a very handsome man who might be tempting us as the satan. Looks could be angelic but the heart satanic.
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                        Malankara Syriac Orthodox,
                        Mar 25, 2010, 12:08 PM
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