21 From that time Jesus began to show to His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised the third day.
22 Then Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, “Far be it from You, Lord; this shall not happen to You!”
23 But He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are an offense to Me, for you are not mindful of the things of God, but the things of men.”
Talk about going from the mountaintop to the pits, Jesus just commended Peter for his spiritual insights that his confession of Jesus as the Son of God and then tells Peter that he is speaking for the devil himself! Jesus had just received Peter into great glory and now tells him to get behind him as he has become Satan’s tool to discourage the Lord Jesus from going to the Cross.
Jesus knew the will of the Father, Peter didn’t. Jesus was trying to communicate the will of the Father and His submission to that will; Peter didn’t want anything to do with it.
Before we attack Peter too harshly, let us consider if we have ever discouraged anyone from the will of God for their lives. I have taken some brash steps to follow the Lord’s leading in my life and have been faced with human opposition. My friends and my family have questioned the wisdom of my direction and quite frankly have sought to sow seeds of doubt into my heart. I have probably questioned people on the will of God in their lives to try to discern whether they were following God’s will or the will of someone else. As humans, we don’t know the will of God for someone else and we had better be careful lest we too take on the person of Satan to stop someone from doing God’s will for their lives.
Well meaning family and friends, not aware of God’s leading, might try to stop someone from going somewhere that doesn’t make any sense to them. In Revelation 3, the faithful church of Philadelphia was told that God had opened a door for them. When God opens a door for us we are to go through that door. We might not fully understand it but God does and by faith in His wisdom we pursue the opportunities that He places before us. Let be those who encourage one another in the will of God. Let not be like Peter and be among those whom Satan actually uses to dissuade God’s people to do God’s work. That said, please continue to pray for strength and wisdom for Bobbi and me as we pursue this open door to Indonesia. We have faced those who stood against us and those who have stood with us. It appears that God’s will is clear and that we are to go. Pray for us as we seek only to do the will of the Father.
Sunday we will hear from Brian and Victoria Rice. The Rice’s are missionaries who have been in China for many years and are transitioning to Italy. Their son Caleb is the one who got the job for our Caleb in Bangkok.
It appears that Florence is settling down a bit. We keep praying that it will. So many people and their lives are being affected. Let’s pray for the people affected to seek the Lord and to find both Him and salvation through Him.
Have a great day in the Lord,