by Charles H. Spurgeon

Peter after His Restoration
Charles H. Spurgeon

When thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren (Luke 22:32).

Peter was to be sifted, so our Lord warned him, and Satan was to operate with the sieve. Satan had an intense desire to destroy Peter-indeed, he would like to destroy all the chosen of God-and therefore he desired to sift him as wheat in the hope that he would be blown away with the husks and the chaff. To see a child of God perish would bring to the Evil One a malicious joy, for he would have wounded the heart of God. If ever the fallen spirit can be happy, he would derive happiness from defeating the grace of God and robbing the Lord Jesus of those whom He bought with His blood. "Satan hath desired to have you" (v. 31). It would be a satisfaction to him to have a believer in his power. He was anxious to get Peter into his clutches to give him as tremendous a shaking as he could manage.

If Satan knows, as he no doubt does, concerning any one believer that he cannot quite destroy him, then he is especially anxious to worry him. If he cannot devour the chosen, he would at least defile them. If he cannot ruin their souls, he would break their quiet. As the Revised Version puts it, Satan even asks of God to have them that he may sift them as wheat. This is a curious statement, for it seems from it that the Devil can pray and that his petition may be granted him. The margin has it, "Satan hath obtained you by asking." The Lord may grant the request of the Devil himself, and yet He would not prove thereby that He had any love toward him. The Lord's wisdom may grant Satan's desire and in the very act overthrow his evil power. Let us not then stake our faith in the Lord's love upon His giving us the precise answer we desire. For what He gives to Satan He may see fit to deny to those whom He loves, and He may do so because He loves them.

It is a fact that the Evil One is permitted to test the precious metal of God's treasury. The story in the Book of ...

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