Who Will You Listen To?


Message Title: Who Will You Listen To?
Main Text: Genesis 2:15-17;
Scripture Reading:
Matthew 4:1-11
RCL Scripture:
Genesis 2:15-17; 3:1-7; Psalm 32; Romans 5:12-19; Matthew 4:1-11
Focus: When given the choice, Jesus chooses God while Adam & Eve choose the tempter.
To step into this season seeking God.
Other Notes:
*sanctified art curriculum, BAPTISM CLASS

SCRIPTURE READING: Matthew 4:1-11Then the Spirit led Jesus up into the wilderness so that the devil might tempt him. After Jesus had fasted for forty days and forty nights, he was starving. The tempter came to him and said, “Since you are God’s Son, command these stones to become bread.” Jesus replied, “It’s written, People won’t live only by bread, but by every word spoken by God.”[a] After that the devil brought him into the holy city and stood him at the highest point of the temple. He said to him, “Since you are God’s Son, throw yourself down; for it is written, I will command my angels concerning you, and they will take you up in their hands so that you won’t hit your foot on a stone.[b] Jesus replied, “Again it’s written, Don’t test the Lord your God.”[c] Then the devil brought him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. He said, “I’ll give you all these if you bow down and worship me.” 10 Jesus responded, “Go away, Satan, because it’s written, You will worship the Lord your God and serve only him.”[d] 11 The devil left him, and angels came and took care of him.

SERIES INTRO: Reading through the Gospels you will notice a few things about Jesus’ ministry. This week a read a quote that said Jesus was asked 187 questions, asked 307, and only answered 3. Sometimes we forget to notice the things Jesus DOESN’T do in his ministry. There is an emphasis on questions over answers in the way Jesus’ ministry functions. Throughout this season, we’re going to ask “what am I seeking? What is God seeking? I invite you to engage with the spiritual practice of seeking through curiosity.

Seeking – not answers but questions


  1. AUDIENCE ENGAGEMENT: How do you feel about snakes?
    1. Indiana jones- “I hate snakes”
    1. Danger Noodle/Nope Rope
    1. Snek is friend
  2. Something fascinating I learned about snakes this week – there is irony in the medical symbol – first off notice the snakes wrapped around the staff. This is a Greek symbol for the god Hermes. But it is also a symbol associated with associated with liars, thieves, negotiation, and wisdom in Greek mythology. Why was that chosen for the profession we so highly depend?

TRANSITION: Today we will be tempted to choose poison or medicine. Who will win our allegiance?

  1. Context:
    1. In the middle of the creation story (version 3- Gen 1:1, 1:2-2:4; 2:5-25), God placed Adam with the responsibility to care for creation.

MAIN TEXT: Genesis 2:15-17 15 The Lord God took the human and settled him in the garden of Eden to farm it and to take care of it. 16 The Lord God commanded the human, “Eat your fill from all of the garden’s trees; 17 but don’t eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, because on the day you eat from it, you will die!” 


  • Genesis: God only gave Adam one restriction (yes, Eve wasn’t created yet per this version): don’t eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
    • Adam was given freedom to use from the land, except for one particular tree. ALL THE LAND?!
      • “don’t touch it”  — I must touch it – Abu in Aladdin (OR Olaf & Fire)
    • We have no record of Adam telling Eve the restriction but we do have Eve offering Adam the fruit after taking a bite herself. Adam was right next to her when the snake spoke and did not stop or warn Eve.
    • Adam & Eve choose to follow the voice of a serpent over the word of God- -They chose the poison of the snake.
      • From that point forward, Adam and Eve were separated from God. They did not have the direct relationship they had in the garden. By choosing poison, they chose
    • Allude to ch 3


  1. Connection to Gospel: Jesus is tempted in the desert after fasting for 40 days. (Meriah hangry) The Tempter tries to get Jesus to use his power for himself, to test God’s word, and to avoid suffering by swearing allegiance to the Tempter.
    1. The Tempter’s words were truly tempting: Jesus could spare all his future suffering if he took this path. HOWEVER, Jesus chooses to stay God’s course. Jesus chose the medicinal truth of God’s word.
    1. The Tempter used scripture but Jesus tested that interpretation agains tother scripture and found it to be false.
      1. When listening to voices—even ones using scripture—use more scripture to interpret scripture. Weigh the opinions of others carefully against the Word of God.

APPLICATION:  My desert and trusting God (Yolo/IDGAF)

  1. Can we see far enough ahead to know that trusting God leads to good things?
    1. Marshmallow test: VIDEO
    1. These munchkins struggled to trust the word of the woman. Would they truly get that second marshmallow?
      1. Marshmallows aren’t bad but eating 1 prevents the abundance to come.
  2. AUDIENCE ENGAGEMENT: What voices are pulling you toward medicine and what voices are pulling you towards poison?
  3. “Motivational speaker Jim Rohn says that we are the average of the five people we spend the most time with. This relates to the law of averages, which is the theory that the result of any given situation will be the average of all outcomes”:  (desputed theory)
    1. Are you surrounded by people who lift you up?
    1. Do you have people encouraging your growth?
    1. Are there mentors in your life showing you the way?
  4. During this series you won’t see a lot of practical steps to take. Instead, we will have questions to reflect on each week.

CONCLUSION: When given the choice, Jesus chooses God while Adam & Eve choose the tempter.


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