I Have Prayed For You (6-12-2007)
I Have Prayed for You
“Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has demanded permission to sift you like wheat; but I have prayed for you, that your faith fail not; and you, when once you have returned again, strengthen your brothers”, (Luke 22:31-2).
Christ and his disciples had just finished the Passover meal, and several events leading up to his crucifixion were about to unfold in an unstoppable domino effect. He was to be betrayed by Judas, forsaken by his disciples, falsely accused by the Jewish religious leaders, and denied by his close friend Peter. Yet, Christ’s concern was not now for his safety, but for Peter spiritual soundness.
The Bible records another scene when the Satan demanded to “sift” one of God’s servants. It was Job. Job was assaulted severely by the Satan, but held on to his spiritual integrity; he did not sin against God during his “sifting” (see Job chapters 1-2). Even though he cursed the very day of his birth, Job did not recant his faith in God. Nothing was so important, not even his own life, that he would compromise his faith in God.
A similar battle raged in Peter, and rages about us today for the same reasons. The Satan desires to have us compromise our faith in God and lose all hope. He will strike us at our weakest areas, bringing discouragement, hopelessness, doubt, guilt, and confusion as he did to Judas. Then when the darkness of all these anti-faith emotions overwhelms us and we loosen our grip on God, he destroys us finally. In Jusdas’ tragic he could not see any hope, lost sight of God’s love and mercy in Jesus Christ, so he wrapped himself in the wicked darkness of the Satan’s lies and killed himself.
What he did not count on is this, the very weakest area of our lives, is where God is strongest, if allowed to help us. And we have the same promise of Christ and holy power to lean on as did Peter, hence “ . . . I have prayed for you that your faith fail not”, (Luke 22:32).
It is our faith in God’s promises coupled with the principles of His righteousness that will take us through the dark hours of temptations and life’s hardships, no matter how crushing there are. Christ will lead us, but we must have the faith to trust and follow him.
We follow Christ’s example by giving our greatest energies to sincere prayer, that prayer in which we relinquish our will, to the will of God as Jesus did in Gethsemane. This builds spiritual stamina and a Christ-like character to go to through the most hellish experiences.
-pastor m. moses andradé