Jesus was tempted for 40 days by Satan in the wilderness and the Bible gives us three specific temptations to study (in Matthew 4 and Luke 4). Here is the first.
For forty days and forty nights he fasted and became very hungry. During that time the devil came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become loaves of bread.” But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say, ‘People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ ” (Matthew 4:2-4 NLT)
40 days would bring about a powerful need for food. Fasting is for the purpose of replacing our human needs (food in this case) with an intent focus upon God and our need of Him.
This temptation was similar to the Garden of Eden with Adam and Eve. Satan lays out a bounty for our physical hunger as bait and waits to see if we take it. He challenges 'who we are' and even challenges the goodness of God and His ability to provide for us. Will we endure temptation so that we can see God provide for us or will we seek a shortcut?
Jesus was challenged to meet His own needs vs. depending on God to provide. You have faced similar challenges.
This type of temptation (hunger) is spoke about by John elsewhere in the Scripture:
Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world. And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever. (1 John 2:15-17 NLT)
Notice the underlined portion. Many cravings will fit under the heading of hunger or physical pleasure. Many of us succumb to temptations like this. It is one of Satan's favorite temptations to use on us. How do we resist?
1. Feeding upon God's Word prepares us to resist. The Psalmist said 'I have hidden Your Word in my heart so that I would not sin against You'. Jesus quoted scripture (Deuteronomy 8:3) to overcome the power of that temptation. He didn't just quote any scripture but a scripture that reminded Him that the spiritual nourishment He had been given was greater than any physical nourishment this world might offer. Feeding on God’s Word fills a much deeper hunger in us. Our commitment to God's Word is a major key in how we resist temptations offered to us that are not of God.
2. Knowing who we are in Christ keeps us from trying to identify ourselves by stuff, feelings, appetites, etc. Remember that God The Father had just identified Jesus as His dearly loved Son that brought Him great joy. If you are a follower of Jesus and saved by His Grace then you are also a child of The Father and you also give joy to Him. That is your identity. You and I need know other satisfaction. The meeting of no physical need will give us a feeling to rival this one.
Remember, Jesus could have used His Divine Power to resist Satan during this time. He did not. Instead He relied upon the Divine Power of the Word and the Divine Authority as God The Father's 'Dearly loved Son'. You and I must rely upon these same things as Satan tempts us by offering short-term satisfaction of our physical appetite. Overcome!