Jesus goes to the wilderness for self-examination, where he remains forty days. Is subjected to three temptations. He overcomes. Returns to the camps of John and begins teaching.
THE harbinger had paved the way; the Logos had been introduced to men as love made manifest, and he must now begin his Christine ministry.
2 And he went forth into the wilderness to be alone with God that he might look into his inner heart, and note its strength and worthiness.
3 And with himself he talked; he said, My lower self is strong; by many ties I am bound down to carnal life.
4 Have I the strength to overcome and give my life a willing sacrifice for men?
5 When I shall stand before the face of men, and they demand a proof of my messiahship, what will I say?
6 And then the tempter came and said, If you be son of God, command these stones to turn to bread.
7 And Jesus said, Who is it that demands a test? It is no sign that one is son of God because he does a miracle; the devils can do mighty things.
8 Did not the black magicians do great things before the Pharaohs?
9 My words and deeds in all the walks of life shall be the proof of my messiahship.
10 And then the tempter said, If you will go into Jerusalem, and from the temple pinnacle cast down yourself to earth, the people will believe that you are the Messiah sent from God.
11 This you can surely do; for did not David say, He gives his angels charge concerning you, and with their will they uphold lest you should fall?
12 And Jesus said, I may not tempt the Lord, my God.
13 And then the tempter said, Look forth upon the world; behold its honours and its fame! Behold its pleasures and its wealth!
14 If you will give your life for these they shall be yours.
15 But Jesus said, Away from me all tempting thoughts. My heart is fixed; I spurn this carnal self with all its vain ambition and its pride.
16 For forty days did Jesus wrestle with his carnal self; his higher self Prevailed. He then was hungry, but his friends had found him and they ministered to him.
17 Then Jesus left the wilderness and in the consciousness of Holy breath, he came unto the camps of John and taught.