Temptation of Jesus - Part 2 of 3 - The Performance Trap

Updated: Dec 10, 2020

Matthew‬ ‭4:5-7‬

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.’”


After a failed first attempt, the tempter tries again with another tactic to ensnare Jesus. Jesus had used scripture to counter the first attack of the enemy. The enemy tries to steal this weapon for himself and quotes scripture (Psalm 91:11) in an effort to trap Jesus. Satan took a verse from the Bible out of context and tried to make the Master prove himself as a result. Jesus is not fooled.

You do not have to prove yourself to anyone, even if they are presented in godly guise. The Father is pleased with you. This is what He had already confirmed to Jesus in the waters of baptism. Knowing that your Father in heaven is pleased with you enables you to live with a quiet confidence. There is no need for you to perform to demonstrate your worth, value, or identity in the presence of others. The performance trap will leave you exhausted and disappointed. Your value will always depend on the opinion of others.

Rest today in the knowledge that your Heavenly Father is pleased with you. Be content in your own skin as a result. Let the weight of people pleasing drop off your back and walk in the lightness of being someone in whom the Father delights.


Have I been trying hard to demonstrate to others that I have value, worth, ability, or even a certain identity? Is it time for me to step out of the vicious cycle of increased effort, then disappointment, that the performance trap causes? Do I need to meditate upon the fact that my Heavenly Father is pleased with me?


Thank you Father that you are pleased with me. Thank you that I do not need to live my life to prove myself to anyone. I am content in the knowledge that Your hand is upon me. Thank you that you will bring me into all that you have for me, as I be myself.

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