“Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry” (Matthew 4:1-2 ESV)

God seems to have favorite numbers. Both the number 40 and the number 3 are significant in today’s OYB reading. The number 40 generally symbolizes a period of testing, trial or preparation. We see the number in both our OT and NT readings today. Noah and his family were kept safe in the ark while God sent 40 days and nights of rain to flood the earth (Gen. 7:12). And in Matthew’s gospel, Jesus was led into the wilderness for 40 days of testing by the “Spirit.” This time of “temptation” points back to at least two events in the OT: 1) The Israelites 40 years of wandering in the wilderness and 2) Adam and Eve’s 3-part temptation in the garden. The 40 days for Jesus marked his preparation for public ministry, just as the 40 years for Israel marked their preparation for entering the promised land.
And the 3-part temptation by the devil was familiar too. Notice the similarity between Satan’s temptation of Eve (Gen. 3) and later, of Jesus:
1) Eve: “good for food;” Jesus: “stones to bread”
2) Eve: “delight to the eyes” Jesus: “let the people see the angels save you”
3) Eve: “wise like God;” Jesus: “give your worship to me instead of God”
Of course, the difference is that Adam and Eve succumbed to temptation, but Jesus overcame it.
The apostle John reminds us that in Christ, we can be “overcomers” too. Notice the three temptations listed by John and then the promise.
“For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world… Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God” (1 John 2:16, 5:5).