Sifted but Saved
Sifted by Christ's Prediction
Would you open your Bibles this morning to the Gospel of Luke, chapter 22...I'm going to read verses 31-34. The setting of these verses is, as you know, the Lord eating the Passover Supper with His disciples as He institutes the Lord's Supper. It's a very critical and strategic time both for our Lord and for His disciples. Strange things are happening. Some strange things are being said. It is a night filled with tenseness and mystery and in the midst of this situation comes the startling prophecy of the Lord Jesus concerning Simon Peter.
''And the Lord said, 'Simon, Simon, behold Satan hath desired
to have you that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed
for thee that thy faith fail not, and when thou art converted,
strengthen thy brethren.' And he said unto Him, 'Lord, I'm ready
to go with Thee both to prison and to death.' And He said, 'I tell
thee, Peter, the cock shall not crow this day before thou shalt
thrice deny that thou knowest Me.'''
Now, there are two great themes in this passage. It is both a frightening and an encouraging passage. It is frightening and enlightening in the sense that it reveals to me that a man who loves Jesus sincerely and had the truest desire to follow the Lord Jesus may be overcome and overborne with fear and intimidation and by the devil and fall into great, great sin. I have every confidence Simon meant exactly what he said when he told the Lord that he was ready to go with Him to prison and even to death...I have no doubt that the apostle meant it because Simon Peter dearly loved the Lord Jesus with all his heart...that rough fisherman loved the Lord Jesus. He had given up everything to follow His Master...and I believe He meant it! He wasn't just bragging! He wasn't making an idle boast! He meant it when he said, ''I am ready to follow Thee to prison and to death...''And, yet even with this dedication...even with this ...
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