Jesus Communes with God and Fasts in the Wilderness for 40 Days and 40 Nights
Joseph Smith Translation, Matthew 4:1–2
1 Then Jesus was led up of the Spirit, into the wilderness, to be with God.
2 And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, and had communed with God, he was afterwards an hungered, and was left to be tempted of the devil.
Elder Bruce R. McConkie wrote:
“Jesus did not go into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil; righteous men do not seek out temptation. He went ‘to be with God’ [JST, Matthew 4:1]. Probably He was visited by the Father; without question He received transcendent spiritual manifestations. The temptations came after He ‘had communed with God’ [JST, Matthew 4:2], ‘after forty days’ [JST, Luke 4:2]. The same was true in the case of Moses. He communed with God, saw the visions of eternity, and was then left unto himself to be tempted of the devil. After resisting temptation he again communed with Deity, gaining further light and revelation [see Moses 1].”
(Doctrinal New Testament Commentary, 3 vols. [1965–73], 1:128.)
“. . . [A]fter His baptism Jesus did what every person who is born of the Spirit should do: He withdrew from the thronging masses of humanity to a place apart to commune with God. Matthew’s account, as he originally wrote it, says: ‘Then’—that is, following His baptism— ‘Jesus was led up of the Spirit, into the wilderness, to be with God. And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, and had communed with God, he was afterwards an hungered, and was left to be tempted of the devil’ [JST, Matthew 4:1–2]. Mark tells us He ‘was with the wild beasts; and the angels ministered unto him’ [JST, Mark 1:11]. Nothing more of this forty-day period is recorded, but we cannot do other than conclude it was a time of rejoicing and spiritual refreshment beyond anything ever experienced by mortal man on earth.”
(The Mortal Messiah: From Bethlehem to Calvary, 4 vols. [1979–81], 1:408–9.)