40: The Temptation of Christ (2020) Script


My name is John.

For years I lived in the wilderness.

Waiting for the Messiah to come.

This is where I stay, every day.

Warning Israel they must turn from their sinful ways.

And prepare their hearts for the coming of our Savior.

Hundreds, thousands came to the river to be baptized.

Then one day, He came.

The clouds parted and the Spirit descended upon us.

This is my beloved Son.

In whom I am well pleased.

[thunder bolts]

[John] And just like that,

He was gone.

This is where my story ends and yours with Him begins.

Before Israel, Christ journeyed into the Judean.

No food, no water.

No sin for Him to carry.

This is the beginning of the 40-Day Temptation of Christ.

[birds crow]

May the morning bring me word of your unfailing love

for I have put my trust in you.

Show me the way that I should go for to you I entrust my life.

Teach me to do your will

for you are my God.

May your good spirit lead me on level ground.

Remember not the former things nor consider the things of old.

Behold, I am doing a new thing and now it springs forth.

Do you not perceive it?

I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.



Go tell your father supper is almost ready.

He'll wanna finish his work soon so he can eat while it's still hot.

Yeshua, what's the matter?

This is rotted. This is no good. This is split.

No good.

I can use that.

That's not bad.


Yeshua, what's wrong?

The Lord makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him.

Though he may stumble, he will not fall for the Lord will uphold him with his hands.

Send me your light and faithful care.

Let them lead me.

Let them bring me to your Holy mountain

to the place where You dwell.

The Heavens declare the glory of God.

The skies proclaim the work of His hands.

Day after day they pour forth speech.

Night after night they reveal knowledge.

But they have no speech.

They use no words.

No sound is heard from them.

Yet their voice goes out to all of the earth.

Their words to the end of the world.

In the Heavens God has pitched a tent for the sun.

It is like a bridegroom coming out of his chambers.

Like a champion rejoicing to run his course.

It rises from one end of the Heavens and makes its circuit to the other.

Nothing is deprived of its warmth.

In the deserts, prepare the way for the Lord.

And make straight in the wilderness a highway for our God.

Every Valley shall be raised up.

The mountains and hills made low, the rugged ground made level

and the rough places a plain.

And the glory of God will be revealed and all of mankind will see it

for the mouth of God has spoken.


comfort my people," says God.

[sheep bleat]

I'm not hungry.

Please Mary, I have to finish this.

He's asleep.

Can you tell me what he said?

You heard what he said.

Not when he was with you.

You heard what he said, after.

Yes, but what did it mean?

You know what he meant.

Please don't speak to me in riddles.


When I found him in the temple I went to reprimand him for running away and he looked at me and said, "Where else would I be but in my father's house?"

My father's house! He said that to me!

What else could he have meant?

Do you remember the year before he was born or have you forgotten it? Because I sure haven't.

How could you ask me that?

Because sometimes it feels like it was a dream.

And sometimes I wish, selfishly, that it were a dream.

That he really is our son.

And he will always be our son.

When you found him, what was he doing?

What was he doing? He was talking with the elders in the courtyard.

About what?

I'm not gonna go there.

About what, Joseph? I want to know, I want to know what our son said.

Not our son.

Your son.

Your son.

No man in history has ever had to carry the burden you have, my love.

And no man ever could but you.


You are the greatest man I've ever known, Joseph of Nazareth.

God would not have given you Yeshua if that were not true.

Yeshua was telling them the story of Abraham.

And how he carried Isaac up the top of Moriah as a sacrifice for the sins.

And how God provided him a ram.

Mary, I was just telling him that story last week.

But it was different.

When he told it was, it was like nothing I ever heard before.

As if he, as if he were somehow inside the story.

As if it were about him.

[breathes heavily]

Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,

I shall fear no evil.

For You are with me.

Your rod and Your staff.

They comfort me.

You prepare a ta...

You prepare a table before me

in the presence of my enemies.

[light growls]

Who are you? [breathes heavily]

What brings you here?

What have you come to do?

Have you not known?

Have you not heard?

Do you know who I am?

How you have fallen from grace, morning star, son of the dawn.

You have been cast down to the earth.

You who laid low the nations.

You said in your heart, "I will ascend above the Heavens.

I will raise my throne above the stars of God.

I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly.

I'll rise above the tops of the clouds and make myself like the most high."

But you've been brought down to the realm of the dead and the depths of the pit.

Those who stare at you ponder your fate.

Is this the man who shook the earth and made kingdoms tremble?

Is this the man who made the world a wilderness?

Who overthrew cities and would not let his captives go home?

So you do.

Now I've seen you before, down by the river, with the Baptist.

You smell awfully familiar.

Like two people I have not seen in a very long time.

The first one I met in a garden centuries ago and the other one

is much older than that.

Do you know what brings you or do you just follow the wind?

Where He leads me, I will follow.

Where He calls me, I will go.

Take a look where you're standing.


All of this is mine.

And I can help you.

I can show you the way.

I am the way.


No, what you are is lost.

You're frail, afraid, and helpless

ever since the day the dust released your kind from its clutches.

Just as the shepherd watches over his scattered flock when he is with them, so will I watch over my sheep.

I will rescue them from the places they were scattered on that day of clouds and darkness.

The sheep are hopeless.

They do nothing but wander.

They always lose their way.

They always stumble to the mouth of the beast.

You think you are doing something good but you do it in vain.

Because in the end, death swallows it all.

I swallow it all.

I will find the lost and the stray.

I will bind up the wounded and strengthen the weak.

I will shepherd my herd with justice.

You need help in order to see how things truly are.

I will help you.

[evil laughter]

[bleat echoes]

[Jesus] The Spirit of the Lord is on me

because He has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor.

He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted.

To proclaim freedom for the captives

and a release from darkness for the prisoners and bestow upon them a crown of beauty instead of ashes,

the oil of joy instead of mourning,

and the garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.

[Lucifer] You're frail, afraid, helpless, ever since the day the dust released your kind from its clutches.

The sheep are hopeless.

They do nothing but wander.

They always lose their way.

They always stumble into the mouth of the beast.

Because in the end, death swallows it all.

I swallow it all.

[Jesus] Just as the shepherd watches over his scattered flock so will I watch over my sheep.

I will rescue them from the places they were scattered on that day of clouds and darkness.

[thunder bolts]

Grass withers and flowers fall but the word of our God endures forever.

The sovereign Lord comes with power.

He rules with a mighty arm

and His reward is with him and His recompense accompanies him.

He tends to his flock like a shepherd.

He gathers all the lambs into His arms and carries them close to His heart.

He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth

and from the Heavens He makes a canopy

and spreads it out across the sky to make a tent in which to live.

He brings princes to not and reduces the rulers of the world to nothing.

He makes strong the weak and makes mighty the weary.

Even young men grow old and frail but with the Lord in their heart

they will soar.

As if upon the wings of eagles...

the Lord, our God,

our God is one.

Love the Lord with all your heart, [heartbeats] with all your strength,

and with all your soul.

[Joseph] This is a perfect lamb.

Do you know why?

It's got no marks on its skin, no wrinkles, no wounds and its legs are strong.

But you know why a lamb like this has to die every year?

It's because our sins are many.

We don't know alwa... we don't always do what we should do or say what we should say.

God demands a sacrifice for our sins but He's also willing to pay it.

Sin is the reason that we suffer, Yeshua, and it's the reason that we die.

It is written.

For your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God and your sins have hidden His face, so that He cannot heal.

Ah, Yeshua.

Sometimes I think that, that I am the son and you are the father, teaching me.

Do you remember the story I told you about Abraham and how He told Abraham that He would provide him a lamb?


you wish this lamb didn't have to die?

Me too.

But I suppose that a merciful God who gave us this lamb to go in our place will one day give us one to go in theirs.


Remember how the Lord, your God, led you all the way in the wilderness these forty years.

To humble

and to test you

in order to know what was in your heart.

Whether or not

He would keep His commands,


He humbled you,

causing you to hunger

and then feeding you mana

which neither you nor your ancestors had known.

In order to teach you that man, that man does not...

[bleating echoes]


[evil laughter]


[Joseph] Yeshua, join me.

You know some days I come up here after work.

Before I even come home and see you and your mother I come up here and I sit and I pray and I think.

I look out here over all of Nazareth, at least what there is of it,

and I remember.

I remember when your- your mother first told me that she was pregnant with you.

I was furious.

I wanted to know who the guy was and I...

she told me the story of the angel that visited her

and the baby wasn't from another man but from the Holy Spirit.

And I was... at first I was, I was torn because I felt like I should turn her in but I knew if I did then they would kill her and

despite all of it I still loved her.

I felt it'd be better to send her away in secret.

The night she told me that she was pregnant with you, I was so mad I didn't go home.

So I stayed here that night.

I didn't want to go home.

And I remember lying down there on the bed where, right were your bed's at now.

And I looked up at the sky and the stars because there was no roof yet

and I fell asleep.

Angry as I could be.

When I woke, sometime in the middle of the night, I can't remember exactly what time it was because I had just been drugged from my sleep and I saw a bright-bright light.

I kept looking up to see what it was and it was a man up here on this roof.

Right here.

And he was doing something. I couldn't see what he was doing, it was so bright.

So I quickly... I ran outside to see if I could see up here on the roof and I was looking up and he said, "Joseph, again do not be afraid for Mary is telling the truth.

The child in her womb is not from man

but from the Holy Spirit."

And I could see what he was doing.

You know what he was doing?

He was building this roof.

He was telling me to go forward

with marrying your mother.

So when I woke up I...

I quickly went and told your mother that now I believed her and I came back here and I started building this house.

I started building this roof.

I guess what I'm trying to say is,

you scared us last week.

You scared us bad.

More than I've ever been scared before.

Even when we had to run away to Egypt.

You were gone for three days and everywhere I looked I couldn't find you.

Your mother was so worried.

We thought we lost you

or that you lost yourself.


What I'm trying to say by that is that

when you get lost,

you can always remember to come up here on the roof to think, to sit and to pray.

You look out over all of Nazareth and what's up there beyond heaven.

And you too, you can remember.

So when you enter your kingdom remember this house

that I gave to you.

And when you do, remember me.

When you enter your kingdom, remember me.


[Mary] Oh, my sweet boy, I thought I'd lost you.

Why did you come out here to this wasteland? I've been looking for you everywhere.

Why did you come out here?

To seek and to save what has been lost.

Here? What's been lost here?


Why did you bring nothing with you? No food, no shelter.

Why are you tormenting yourself like this?

Rest now, rest.

I understand.

I understand.

You feel you must suffer.

Going days and weeks with no food.

Keeping no shelter except the stones.

No bed except the dirt.

[heavy breathing]

You were always a lonely boy.

You'd often wonder away hours at a time.

Your friends, your thoughts and prayers.

Why did you come here? What do you hope to get from here?

My flock is without a shepherd.

Thus, has been plundered and made food for wild animals.

My shepherds, my shepherds no longer look after my flock

but rather care only for themselves.

I will find my sheep.

I will look after them.

Is that what this is about?

A sheep?

Son, I do not understand. You are not a shepherd.

There are plenty of sheep. Our little town is overrun with sheep.

What's so important, just one?

If any man has a hundred sheep and even one goes astray,

does he not leave the ninety nine on the mountain to search for the one that has been lost?

And he shall rise and shepherd his flock with the strength of the Lord.

In the majesty of the name of Lord his God.

And they shall remain, for at that moment, he will be great to the ends of the earth.

And now you're quoting scripture to me.

That's the Prophet Micah, isn't it?

Why will you not just speak to me? Tell me why you are here.

It's like you don't know me.

I know you.

You're delirious.

It's the heat and the hunger.

You... you need to eat. You need to rest.

I brought nothing with me for you to eat.

Have I ever told you what Bethlehem means?

The city in which you were born.

It means the house of bread.

Shortly after you were born, your father had a dream.

In this dream, an angel came to him and told him that the king was looking for you, to kill you.

We left.

We fled to Egypt.

You were too young to remember.

But the king did not know we had gone and he was determined to know you were dead.

He ordered the deaths of every boy in the kingdom up to two years old.

Mothers and fathers, with no explanation or understanding, watch their children slaughtered instead of watching them grow.

There was no child left in the kingdom.

Where once there was laughter and joy, there was only weeping and gnashing of teeth.

And there were countless graves.

Small simple graves marked by small simple stones

in the house of bread.

Please, Yeshua, do not ask me to lay more stones in the desert.

Ask me to mark more altars in the name of suffering and grief and agony.

This world is filled with emptiness.

What good can you do by emptying yourself?

Your suffering is meaningless.

All suffering is meaningless.

Haven't the innocent suffered enough?

What good can you do if you too are dead?

You can end this suffering.

If you are the Son of God, you can turn house of stone into the house of bread again.

Starve yourself no more.

End this meaningless suffering.

If you are the Son of God,

turn this stone into bread.

Please, Yeshua.

It is written, man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.


You will starve and so will your people.

I have food to eat that you know nothing about.

My food is to do the will of Him who sent me, and to finish His work.

Yes, the word of God.

Every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.

I have heard the word thunder through the very walls of Heaven.

I watch 51-35 galaxies into existence and shape celestial cyclones out of nothing.

The word of God spat me out like a piece of moldy bread.

You say man lives by every word that comes from the mouth of God?

What would you know about the word of God?

Just as the rain and snow fall from heaven and do not return until they have watered the earth, made it flourish with seed for the sower and bread for the eater,

so is My word that goes from My mouth.

Then tell me, Nazarean.

What is the word of God?

I am.

[Mary] We left.

We fled to Egypt.

You were too young to remember.

But the king did not know we had gone and he was determined to know you were dead.

He ordered the deaths of every boy in the kingdom up to two years old.

There was no child left in the kingdom.

Where once there was laughter and joy, there was only weeping and gnashing of teeth.

And there were countless graves.

Small simple graves marked by small simple stones

in the house of bread.

You can't save them.

You wander away again, my son?

Ah, just stay there. Rest and relax.

I remember before when you wandered away.

For three days, do you remember that?

We searched everywhere for you.

All across the countryside and the city.

We even searched the temple up and down.

Oh, Yeshua, your mother... your mother, she was so worried.

I kept having to tell her over and over that all would be well, God would take care of you.

I'm not really sure I even believed that myself but it's what I had to tell her to make her feel better.

She felt... she felt so guilty, so responsible like we had been entrusted with your care and your safety and here we'd lost you.

When I found you, I wasn't an angry father because you would run away from the caravan and not stayed put where I told you to be and rather than being scared you looked at me and said, "Where else would I be but in my father's house doing my father's business?"

Oh, Yeshua,

are you just lost again?

Come, my boy.

Let me take you home.

Come on.

Come on.

You're okay.

I got you.

I'll take your blanket for you.

Give me your hand.

Ah, my boy.

My son.

My idealistic son. [chuckles]

Look where you are now.

You're home.

I know, you had lots of homes.

Bethlehem, Egypt.

The home I built you in Nazareth.

Those were never really your home, were they?

This is where you felt most at home.

Yeshua, you and me, we've kind of always had a thing with rooftops, haven't we?

A place to come sit, pray and think.

A place that we use to sit out and look out there just beyond heaven and we would remember.

I remember my defiant little boy.

So bold.

When I found him in the temple, he started talking of his father's house, his father's business, and I had to quickly usher them away.

The chief priests and the elders, they began to ask questions.

They wanted to know who he might be speaking of.

And I was frightened.

Oh Yeshua, I was frightened because I knew if they found out who you really were, they'd ask for a sign.

They'd ask for proof.

And if we couldn't deliver, they would call you a blasphemer.

They could have put you to death.

They could have put your mother and myself to death.

I know you wouldn't have wanted that.

Yeshua, I wanted, with pride, to tell everyone who you were.

I wanted to scream from the rooftops that my son was the one who came in the name of the Lord.

That my son was the king of kings.

My son, he was the son of the Living God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

Your mother was scared all the time that someone would find out that you would say something.

As a boy that you would tell the truth to someone so instead we had to cover it up.

We had to lie.

We had to deny who you were.

It was hard to believe.

Where were you? We were looking for you everywhere.

It doesn't really matter what I believe.

It matters what you believe, son.

Do you believe in here that you are the son of the living God? Do you believe?

All things have been committed to me by my father.

No one knows the Son as the Father does.

And no one knows the Father as the Son does.

Except those that he chooses to reveal him to.

That's what I wanted to hear.

That you believe.

And if you believe, then your time has come.

Yeshua, if you cast yourself down right here in front all those people, they would have no way to deny who you are.

They want to see this Messiah, they want to see the coming.

But they need a sign.

They need proof.

People don't believe unless they can see with their eyes.

And what better way than right here? On top of your Father's house? On top of the temple?

If you were to fly right down to them and have no hair on your head touched, no bone in your body broken, if you were cast yourself down and to land right in the middle of them, they could never deny then that you are the son of God.

They would have their sign.

Then they would believe.

Can you do that for me, son?

You have nothing to fear for it is written that He will command His Angels concerning you and they will lift you up with their hands.

And they will not let your foot strike a stone.

You know you can't fail.

You have God's graces defending you.

You have your Father protecting you.

So come, son.

It's your time.

Can you do that for me, son?

And do what you came to do.


[Joseph] To be who you were meant to be.

Show us.

Show me.

It is also written, do not put the Lord, your God, to the test.

[voice of God] This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

Do not put Him to the test?

Why is it only He is allowed to make the tests?

Very well.

Find your own way down.

[bleats echoing]

Yeshua, it's time.

Your father is leaving.

There is so much that I wanted to tell you but time gives mercy to no man.

Yeshua, I know your heart

and I know why you've been lost these past few years.

It's because you've been torn between the will of two masters, two fathers.

And that time has come to its end.

My son.

You will always be my son.



now you must be about your father's business.

My beloved.

You were right to believe in the angel.

You made me believe.

You made me believe.


I'm glad to see you made it.

Let me help you.

Grab my hand.

Grab my hand.

I know you're tired, weak, and hungry.

Grab my hand.

Yeshua, grab my hand.

No more games.

You have my word.

I admit that I was testing you, trying to make you fail.

I've often issued those challenges in the past but never to anyone as worthy as you.

You blocked every blow, diverted every deception and evaded every snare that I had.

Which I didn't understand at first, I do now.

I come to seek and save what has been lost.

A shepherd?

Trust me, these sheep need a shepherd.

They get lost from time to time.

By now you know who I am and I know who you are.

I could have let you die out there which would have been much easier.

But the more I watched you, the more I heard you, the more I began to believe in you.

So I've decided that I want to help you.

I surrender to the son of God.

You don't believe me?

Turn around.

Are they not majestic?

The kingdoms of the world?

Before the man and the woman broke faith with God, all of this was bright.

They knew no pain, no tears, no longing.

But this is what I see.

This is the world as they have made it.

This is the world while under the dominion of your sheep.

I thought what I wanted was to claim dominion over what your God so freely has given to these people so I tricked the woman, I convinced the man and as a result I won the world.

But Yeshua, I have changed and you have changed me.

And now I see a world with no more pain or suffering.

I see a world with their shepherds walking amongst them who are there to protect them and care for them and feed them.

I know why you seek to bring your sheep home from the wilderness.

You want to claim your kingdom.

To make a home again for all of your lost sheep.

So Man of Nazareth, the son of God, I will fight you no more.

And you do not have to take anything from me.

I will give it to you.

There's one requirement.

It's a small transaction.

A formality really.

As much as I want to, I cannot simply hand you over the kingdoms of the world unless you bow down and worship me.


do you prefer to see them suffer?

You of all people should know that sacrifice is the only way to restore the kingdom.

They will continue to be sacrificed day after day until the end of time itself.

Is that what you wish for them?

God will always get what he wants and that condition demands a sacrifice.

So why should that sacrifice be theirs?

What other way is there besides their continual sacrifice?


There will come a white horse whose rider will be called faithful and true.

His eyes will burn with fire.

And upon his head will rest many crowns.

On his robe and on his thigh will be written the words King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

I am that rider.

I am the way.

No, you are confused.

You are forgetting what is required.

Yeshua, picture a world without pain and conflict, without strife and misunderstanding.

This is a world with you in control as a good and mighty leader with me there to protect you and to advise you and guide you.

There's not an eternity of peace worthy of a moment's compromise.

If you really know me,

then you know my Father too.

Anyone who has seen me has also seen the Father.

The son of man must be raised high so that all the world may see and all the world may believe.

God did not send His son to the earth to condemn it.

He sent His son to the earth to save it, through Him.

Anyone who calls upon the name of the Lord can be saved.

Even me?

[sheep bleats]

Why won't you let me surrender?

Why won't you let me give you back the kingdoms?

You answer me.

Anything else you do will lead to more pain and suffering and death on your hands.

Yeshua, Yeshua, it is only a moment of worship.

No one has to know, you don't even have to mean it.

This is your last chance.

If you refuse me again, you will have nothing to protect yourself from His wrath

and mine.

I hold the power of Hell and death in my hands.

What do you have against me?

What do you have against me?

You answer me.

[sheep bleats]

You answer me.

I am the resurrection and the life.

Any man who believes in me though he were dead yet shall he live.

When all is finished, you will beg to worship me.

You have the chance to end the suffering of your people, but no you would rather see them persist in their hunger, persist in the grief and persist in their pain.

You are not a good shepherd, you are just a coward and a fool!

Do you know what this means? This means they will have every chance to reject you, they will always have the choice to oppose you, I promise you that!

I will use all of my power to make sure they see you for who you are and I will give them every reason to doubt and distrust you.

And you, Yeshua, will take the blame.

Get away from me, Satan.

It is written.

"Worship the Lord, your God,

and serve only Him."



The reason that my Father loves me is that I lay down my life only to take it up again.

No one can take it from me but I lay it down of my own accord.

I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again.

This command

I received from my Father.

[John] Even after I saw the Christ,

I didn't stop the work.

I walked in faith to my last day.

We must walk by faith

even when we cannot see for we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses.

But He has been tempted in every way just as we are, yet he was without sin.

We need God's Word to always light our way.

Christ is our Good Shepherd.

He came to gather together what had been scattered.

He came to find what was lost.

To restore what had been broken.

He came to give strength to the weary.

To give sight to the blind.

He paid for our sins on the cross at Calvary.

By accepting this truth, we can receive his gift of life.

Now we are called to pick up the cross and follow him.

Let us come together and walk with Him in faith.

We must share the good news with others.

The world needs the good news now more than ever.

We are called to be His messenger.

Let us unite together one body, one voice and proclaim His love for all to hear.

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son.

That whosoever believeth in him shall not perish but have everlasting life.



[music ends]