After You Have Suffered for a Little
After You Have Suffered for a Little
Peter was the Apostle who learned the hard way what it was like to fall into sin — just because of his fear. When Jesus was on trial for His life, Peter followed behind to see what was happening. When bystanders saw that Peter was a follower of Jesus, they approached him about it. In fear for his life — and with cursing and swearing — three times Peter denied that he ever knew Jesus. The cock crowed.
Then Peter was greatly ashamed and wept. He wept because he knew Jesus was the promised Messiah, our Savior. He wept because he knew Jesus loved him dearly. He wept because not long before that time, he had loudly declared that he would bravely stand up for Jesus, even if all the other disciples fell away.
Later, Peter was forgiven and strengthened in the Lord. But, he never forgot our vulnerability to fall into sin. There is no one who can claim they will never fall into sin.
Because we are all susceptible to sin every day — in unexpected circumstances — Peter felt urged to tell us about it, so we will not be caught unaware. In 1 Peter 5:8-10, he writes,
Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls about like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.
But resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world.
And after you have suffered for a little, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you.
Peter is warning us that we cannot afford to fool around in this world. We’ve got to constantly be on the alert for the devil’s sneaky temptations. Because the devil knows us very well, he knows our weaknesses. He knows how to make us think God is not taking care of our needs or that God does not answer prayers.
The devil knows how to make us so ashamed that we think God will not forgive us. But, God is always longing to forgive us. He is “the God of all grace”. We should not let the devil shame us into denying that truth.
The truth is that God has called all of us to put our faith in Christ, so that all of our sins will be washed away and we will be able to live with Him in eternal glory. Paul talks about that in Ephesians 2:8, where he says,
For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God.
The only way we can resist the devil in all temptations is to remember what God has said on that subject. For example, if the devil is tempting us with greed, remember what God has to say about greed. If we don’t remember exactly what God has said, we can look it up through any of the Bible search sites on the Internet. We need to learn God’s word well enough to face any temptation.
When we are tempted, we also need to remember that we are not the only ones who have been tempted. Absolutely everyone is tempted every day. God is fully aware of the suffering we are going through with our temptations. And He has promised to help us as we learn to trust in Him and His ways.
Peter knew that, so he said, “And after you have suffered for a little, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you.”
Because God has given us this call to have faith in Him, He will use the temptations we have faced to eventually make us perfect in His sight, as we learn to stand firm on God’s word.
God will cause our leaning on Him to confirm our faith — so that the temptation won’t destroy us, but will make us more sure of God’s love for us.
As we resist each and every temptation, God will strengthen us to face coming temptations with a greater faith and love for our Lord.
And in the end, God will establish us firmly in the true faith, so that our confidence in Him is filled with love and joy.
Because God knows how to do all this for us, it is totally worth it to resist the devil in every temptation, and trust in the Lord, our Savior.
Then, as we look back on all that God has done for us, we will say, “Hallelujah! The Lord is my Deliverer.”
A Christian devotional to glorify the LORD of lords and GOD of gods.
Pray for our country.
The LORD made this day, let us rejoice and be glad in Him.
The word of the LORD is tried;
He is a shield to all who take refuge in Him.
Sing for joy in the LORD, O you righteous ones;
Praise is becoming to the upright.
How blessed are those who dwell in Thy house!
They are ever praising Thee.
Just as a father has compassion on his children,
So the LORD has compassion on those who fear Him.
O give thanks to the LORD, for He is good;
For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
Glory in His holy name;
Let the heart of those who seek the LORD be glad.
Not that I have already obtained it, or have already become perfect, but I press on in order that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus.