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Monday, July 26, 2010

Warfare portals pt23

Dear beloved: Another example of a person who was walking with the Lord but was harassed by the devil was Peter, the disciple of Jesus. In Luke 22:31, Jesus said to Peter, "Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has demanded to sift you like wheat; v32 but I have prayed for you, that your faith may not fail; and you, once you have turned again, strengthen your brothers." So we see that Jesus told Simon that Satan had come to Jesus and asked permission to attack him. That is the same situation as we found Job in yesterday's teaching, where Satan had come before the Lord and God gave him permission to attack Job. To be sifted like wheat means that the chaff was going to be separated from the heavy grain, it meant to Peter that he was going to undergo a trial and a testing. In Matthew 3:11 John the Baptist describes the coming ministry of Jesus, "As for me, I baptize you with water for repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, and I am not fit to remove His sandals; He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. v12 And His winnowing fork is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clear His threshing floor; and He will gather His wheat into the barn, but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire." Jesus then prophesied to Peter when He said to Him in verse 32, "when once you have turned again, strengthen you brothers." Jesus knew that Peter was going to fall, that when the cock crowed that Peter would in fact deny Him, and so He prayed for his faith to not fail.

Another situation where Peter was harassed was in Matthew 16:22 And Peter took Jesus aside and he began to rebuke Him, saying, "God forbid it Lord, that this should ever happen to You." v23 But He turned and said to Peter,"Get behind Me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me; for you are not setting your mind on God's interests but on man's." So Jesus called out Satan who was harassing Peter and told him to get behind him. Peter wasn't demon possessed or anything close to that, his thinking was just being influenced by the devil and Jesus corrected him on it. Jesus was quite able to see into the spirit realm and identify demons and many times people who are walking closely with the Lord can also see into the spirit realm and identify demons. I once had a friend who was an evangelist and he could at times easily see demons on people or around certain business or entertainment places such as bars or casinos.

The writer of Hebrews tells us in Heb. 4:15 For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. v16 Let us therefore draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and may find grace to help in time of need. This is a comforting word when we are harassed by the devil, that we know that Jesus was tempted in the same way as we are, but He did not give in. So we know that if we are a new creation in Christ Jesus, that the old has passed away, that we need not give in either, that we have victory over temptation by the power, the blood, and by the grace of Jesus. When demonic oppression and onslaught comes your way, call on Jesus. Come boldly before the throne of grace, tell the devil to get behind thee, and keep repeating it until the temptation passes. Whether breaking chains of addictions, bad habits, depression, or anything else in your life that does not bring glory to God, call on Jesus, the One who shed His blood to set you free. Whom the Son sets free is free indeed! Walk in freedom today, in Christ, Jim

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