How could Jesus be tempted, when God cannot be tempted? 

Christ was both man and God (John 1:1-3; John 1:14). The purpose of the incarnation was for Christ to become a human, get tempted as a man to show us how to overcome sin (Hebrews 4:15), and then redeem us from the penalty of sin by His death (Titus 2:14).

Christ experienced the full weight of every conceivable temptation that the “prince of this world” (John 12:31) could place upon Him, but without falling for any of them (John 14:30). Satan found nothing in Jesus that responded to his temptations (Hebrews 2:18). He “was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin” (Hebrews 4:15).

Christ was tempted and overcame the temptations by the same grace (Romans 3:24) that the Father has made available for us (Ephesians 1:7). If Christ overcame because He was divine, He would not have been a perfect example for us (1 Peter 2:21). But being a human, like us, He fought the devil by God’s grace.

It is this grace that transforms sinful humans by “the power of God unto salvation” (Romans 1:16). Grace is not merely God’s mercy and willingness to forgive, it is an active changing power for victory over all sin. Instead of vain attempts to earn salvation by human efforts, the Christian has the privilege of free access to unlimited resources of grace. “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13).

Because of Christ’s victory over sin, we too may triumph over it (Romans 8:1–4). In Him we can be “more than conquerors” (Romans 8:37), for God “giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 15:57), over both sin and its wages, death (Galatians 2:20).

Check out our Bible Answers page for more information on a variety of topics.

In His service,

BibleAsk Team

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