“And the Lord said, ‘Simon, Simon! Indeed Satan has desired you, that he may sift you as wheat.’ “ In reading this verse in Luke 22:3, the Holy Spirit brought to my attention a Biblical truth that hit me like a glass of cold water in the face. In that passage the Lord is talking to Peter. Jesus told him that Satan himself – AKA the devil or the accuser – desired to have him that he might sift him as wheat. It’s comforting to know that through belief in Christ’s atonement, you and I are forever “wheat” that will be gathered into His garner because Jesus, the “grain of wheat”, died for our sins. Our salvation and resurrection is secure!
Practically speaking, Scripture indicates that Satan has his eyes on us as well. The Greek word for desired indicates that Satan demanded that Peter be put on trial. Doesn’t that remind you of Job? Satan said that Job was only a worshipper of God (Elohim) because of the blessings he was given by God. Put to the test, Job passed (though not without problems).
It would be foolish to ask the “Whys?” or “How can a God of love allow this trial to take place?” Fact is, it happens. Our faith is put on trial, which is often times fiery. Sometimes, as Hebrews tells us, there is the trial of cruel mockings. And just as there can be different trials and testings, there can also be different outcomes. Peter, as we know, denied the Lord three times but was restored. Judas, on the other hand, denied Jesus and hung himself.
The nature of any test in God’s Kingdom is never intended to condemn or destroy us. Remember, God tests for growth; Satan tempts for destruction. Pass the test of faithfulness today. Forgive yourself of past sins and failures because God has. The enemy wants you to quit so he’ll try to wear you down with guilt, condemnation, legalism, fear, and doubt.
But here’s the Good News – Jesus is praying for you! Because of that, “No weapon formed against you shall prosper”.