Homilies on Luke: Fragments on Luke

By Joseph T. Lienhard; Origen | Go to book overview

HOMILY 30 Luke 4.5-8

On the Savior's second temptation.

BOTH THE SON of God and the Antichrist are eager to reign. But the Antichrist wants to kill those he has subjected to himself. Christ reigns to save. And, if we are faithful, Christ, who is Word, Wisdom, Justice, and Truth, reigns over each of us. But, if we are lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, then sin reigns over us. The Apostle says of it, "Therefore, let not sin reign in your mortal body."1. Hence, two rival kings eagerly strive to reign: the devil, the king of sin, over sinners; and Christ, the King of Justice, over the just. The devil knew that Christ had come to take away his kingdom and to begin to subject those who had been under him to Christ. Therefore, "he showed him all the kingdoms of the world"2. and of the men of this world. Some are ruled by fornication, others by avarice; some are transported by popularity, others are captivated by the allure of beauty.

2. And we should not think that, when the devil showed Jesus the kingdoms of the world, he showed him, for example, the kingdom of the Persians, and of the Indians. "He showed him all the kingdoms of the world," that is, his own kingdom, how he reigned in the world. The devil urged Christ to do what he willed, so that he would have even Christ as his subject. The devil says, "Do you want to reign over all of these?" He shows him countless multitudes of people whom he holds under his power. And indeed, if we want to confess our wretchedness and our unhappiness openly, the devil is king of almost the entire world. This is why the Savior calls him "the prince of this

____________________
1.
Rom 6.12.
2.
Lk 4.5-6.

-123-

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