Several weeks ago, while golfing with some friends, I found… Well, I’m not exactly sure what it was I found. It was made of plastic, was round and it came to a point on one end.
I showed it to the other guys and none of them knew what it was, but everyone had an idea. Maybe it was something to hold your cigar so you didn’t have to lay it on the ground. The cap also held a ball marker, so maybe the tube had held a divot tool at one time.
Later, after we finished our round, the four of us were in the clubhouse having a beverage and talking about our game. I took the opportunity to ask the Pro shop manager if he knew what it was. He did, immediately. The plastic tube was meant to hold a certain type of tee, keeping it from getting damaged in your pocket. I gave him so he could put it to good use instead of me throwing it away.
That afternoon I sat down to prepare for a Bible study I was teaching later that week based on Matthew 4:1-11 and the forty days Jesus spent in the desert. The study was focusing on how Jesus’ responded to each of Satan’s temptations.
Take a quick look at John 1:1-4 (1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind.) — Clearly Jesus had the power to vanish Satan with a single word or thought.
However, in each case Jesus chose not to rely on his own power to turn back Satan’s temptation, but instead relied on the power of the word of God.
I was absentmindedly toying with the tee holder and wondering about the golf tee it was meant to protect. Where was the tee? What had happened to it? Was it still out there holding up a golf ball, or had it been damaged and lost its ability to do the one thing it was created for.
We have something in common with that tee holder, and in with Jesus. Each of us has been created in the image of God. Each of us has a mission and a calling.
Like Jesus, Satan is out there tempting us every day. We do not have the power to vanish Satan, however we do have the word of God available to us, and as Jesus demonstrated that’s all we need.
John R. Fowler is the pastor of First Presbyterian Church in Prosper.