Strength in Times of Crisis
Now more than ever, we need a contagious epidemic of holy boldness and courageous Christians, so that we may have strength in times of crisis.
Adrian Rogers says, “The most joyful people are those who stand for Jesus.”
During the Last Supper with His disciples, Jesus Christ warned them of His coming crucifixion and death. He told Simon Peter that he would deny Him three times. Peter thought this was impossible, for he loved Jesus so much. Yet, in Luke 22:31, Jesus explained, “Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift all of you as wheat.”
We have a real, cunning, and very destructive enemy named Satan, who wants to surface our faults and failures to accuse and condemn us. However, he is only able to sift us, because the Holy Spirit also wants to reveal these impurities, not to condemn us, but to cleanse us.
Peter was so sure of his own ability, yet he was sabotaged by his own self-confidence. This self-confidence led to his prayerlessness in the Garden of Gethsemane, when he slept while he should have been up praying.
And before his fleshly courage ultimately failed him, he went after the wrong enemy, using the wrong weapon with the wrong energy and attitude.
Like Peter, our actions will surprise us when we face these kinds of threats. Peter did not expect to deny Jesus. In that moment, Peter learned that failure is not final. Peter remembered that he had an Advocate who secured Him.
Jesus had told him, “But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers” (Luke 22:32).
Jesus said that He Himself prayed for Peter, and He prays for us. When Satan sifts us and reveals our impurities before the throne of God, Jesus is our Advocate who intercedes for us.
Jesus knew the worst about Peter and the best about him, too. He saw past the weakness and failures, and looked into his heart, at his faith. Through this experience, Peter learned what he was made of; he renounced his self-confidence, and instead, put his confidence in Jesus Christ.
In times of crisis, we must remember that our adversary will sift us and our abilities will fail us. Our actions may surprise us, but nothing surprises Jesus Christ, our Advocate, who secures us.
Adrianisms: “One of the curses of 20th century Christianity is cowardly Christians—those who will not stand up, those who are not bold believers.”
“Sin is an unexpected opportunity, compounded by an undetected weakness and an unprotected life.”
“God doesn’t love us because we’re valuable; we’re valuable because He loves us.”
“The most miserable man on Earth is not an unsaved man or woman. The most miserable person on Earth is a saved man or woman out of fellowship with Jesus Christ. The most joyful people are those who stand for Jesus.”
Now more than ever, we need a contagious epidemic of holy boldness and courageous Christians. In this message, Adrian Rogers shares four things to remember in times of crisis, so that we may live with courage and confidence in Jesus Christ.
In this message, Adrian Rogers shares four things to remember in times of crisis, so that we may live with courage and confidence in Jesus Christ.
Your adversary will sift you
Your abilities will sabotage you
Your actions will surprise you
Your advocate will secure you
you know why Peter denied jesus, he was petrified they were taking him to the cross. It looked like he was out of control. He’d been beaten denied, cursed, whipped, falsely accused on his way to calvary looked like everything was out of control. Then the rooster Crows and he was still in perfect control For over 50 years. Pastor teacher and author. Adrian Rogers preached to audiences and touched lives all over the world with his unique brand of solid biblical teaching. His teaching has been described as profound truth stated so simply a five year old can understand it and yet it still touches the heart of a 50 year old. And you’ll hear that. And these messages on the basics of the Christian faith. Have your bibles ready and join us for today’s message before we begin. Remember you can follow along with pastor Rogers outline and notes on today’s message at L WF dot org or the my L WF app. Now let’s join Adrian Rogers, Did you take God’s word and be finding please the gospel of Luke. Chapter 22 Luke chapter 22. And when you found it, look up here, the passage that we’re going to look at today takes place right after the last supper that our Lord had with his disciples. It was Passover. He had talked to them about his coming crucifixion, his passion and his glory. They didn’t really understand, they didn’t comprehend he had reminded them one more time of his enduring love for them and then he warned Simon, Peter Simon before the rooster Crows, you’re going to deny me three times. Peter said, Oh no Lord, not me. Why Lord, I would go with you to prison and to death. Look at the scripture luke 22 verse 31. And the Lord said, Simon Simon, the old satan hath desired to have you that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for thee that thy faith fail, not when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren. And he said unto him, that is Peter said to jesus Lord, I am ready to go with the both into prison and to death. And he said, that is jesus said, I tell thee, Peter, the cock, the rooster shall not crow this day before thou shalt christ And I that thou knowest me. I want to talk to you today about courage in time of crisis. I want to talk to you today about having strength in time of crisis, how to be a courageous christian. For I am convinced that one of the curses of Christianity is cowardly christians. Those who will not stand up, those who are not bold believers. We’ll talk about the moral majority, no friend. It is the silent majority. That is the problem or even the silent minority. A wise man has said, it is the strategy of satan to keep good people silent in times of crisis in an evil time. What we need is a contagious epidemic of Holy boldness and I’m afraid that many of us like that now, I’m not talking about human courage. Human courage. Some people have that. I’m not talking about just a courageous attitude. Some have that. Some have natural boldness and some of us have natural fears. I read about two men who were out bear hunting, they were in the snow and they saw some bear tracks. One man said, you follow the tracks and see where he’s going. I’ll follow these and see where he’s been. Some of us have natural boldness and some of us have natural fears. But I want to talk to you today about holy boldness. And again, when I’m talking about holy boldness and I’m not talking about arrogance. Holy bonuses, humble bonus. I want to give you four principles today from this passage of scripture, three of them will challenge you and one of them will encourage you. But I want you to see these four principles today that are gonna come right out of this story. So keep your bibles open. Number one, your adversary will sift you, Your adversary will sift you. You have an adversary. Now, notice what it says here. In verse 31, Simon Simon Behold Satan had desired you do you know what the name? Satan means? It means adversary. It means enemy. You have an enemy. You do not christians in general. You have an adversary and his name is satan. He is not some figure of speech. He’s not some figment of your imagination. He is real. He’s personal, intelligent, cunning and destructive. Satan is only one of his names. He’s also called the devil, which means slanderer. He’s called the Accuser of the brethren. He’s called the Deceiver. He’s called the Dragon. He’s called The Father of Lies. He’s called the God of this world. He’s called the serpent. He has called the destroyer. He is called the Tempter. He has called the evil One. Here he is called satan and it means adversary adversary. Now his his personality is described. His plan is disclosed. He sifts the Saints. What that means to sift. He’s talking about wheat. The name Simon means something that’s unstable. Peter had two names. 1 Peter which meant rock, the other means something like wheat that can be sifted. They would put weed in a sieve a screening process and they would shake it and the wheat would go through the sieve and the straw and the rocks and the debris would remain on top. So why would you sift wheat to discover and to reveal the impurities the dirt, the trash that’s in the wheat. Now, jesus said, look, peter, you have an adversary and he is going to sift you. He’s going to reveal the trash that is in your life. I will say this, that you have an adversary is doing exactly the same thing to you. Don’t get the idea that when you get saved, your battle with satan is over. Peter was a saved man, jesus talked about his faith, but he also talked about his adversary, you say, well, I never have any difficulty with the devil, then I wonder if you’re saved. If you’ve never met the devil, You and the devil been going in the same direction, You’re in collusion with him, Turn around, you’ll be in collision with him. Peter was a man of God. He loved God. Now, why does satan sift the Saints? Why is your adversary trying to find faults in you and friend? There are plenty of them. He can find in in this preacher. Why is he doing that? So he can take those faults and accuse us and condemn us and point out our faults, our failures. Our foibles our flaws before Almighty God, he is called the accuser of the brethren. So he wants to surface these things. But someone else who points out your flaws and your faults. That’s the Holy Spirit. What’s the difference between satanic accusation and Holy Spirit conviction? Well, the devil does it to condemn us. The Holy Spirit, does it to cleanse us and you better learn the difference between accusation and conviction. I wish I had more time to talk about that. But I want you to see this number one. Your adversary will sift you. And if he doesn’t doesn’t mean that you are saved. It may mean that you’re not saved. You have an adversary. And as as you add, as the adversary sifted uh Simon. Peter, he will sift you principle number two, your abilities will sabotage you. Your abilities will sabotage you now sabotages an inside job. It doesn’t talk primarily about what some army does from on the outside, but what you do or some enemy within the fortress does notice if you will hear verses 33 and 34, Peter is talking now about his abilities, he said, he said it to him, Lord, I’m ready to go with the both in the prison and to death. Peter was so sure of his own ability. Number one self confidence. Self confidence, Peter was naturally aggressive, self confident and bold. You know, there are a lot of people who are trying to develop self confidence today. That’s the one thing that we need to lose. That is the one thing we need to lose over and over again. Their courses and courses and courses on self confidence. Self confidence is the way down the bible says he that trusted his heart is a fool. If you don’t deny yourself, you’re going to deny, jesus put it down big plain and straight. If you don’t deny yourself, you’re going to deny jesus. What was his? What was his problem? Self confidence? He was bragging when he should have been trusting. Second problem. 2nd problem was prayer listening. He was sleeping when he should have been praying. Go back and look if you will in verse 4 to 4 of the same chapter, jesus is in gas semi praying and being in agony. He prayed more earnestly? And his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling to the ground. And when he rose up from prayer and was come to his disciples, he found them sleeping for sorrow and he said unto them, why sleepy rise and pray lest you enter into temptation, Peter who cursed, swore and denied the Lord, jesus christ was sleeping when he should have been praying. Now, I’ve talked about self confidence, which is pride. Do you know what the twin sister pride is? Prayer, listening, carelessness. Do you know why we don’t pray? Let me tell you why we don’t pray because we’re quite confident we can make it without pray. That’s why we don’t pray. I mean when we’re in a crisis, we pray, don’t we? Sometimes we come the end of the day and we say, oh God, I really blew it today, dear God! Oh God, forgive me. Oh God! What a miss at the end of the day. But what did jesus teach us to pray in the model prayer our father, which art in heaven, hallowed, be thy name, thy kingdom, come thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven? Give us this day, our daily bread. Now, when you pray for daily bread, when you’re about to go to sleep, no in the morning in the morning and forgive us our debts as we forgive our dentist and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. When is that prayer to be prayed after? We’ve messed up at the end of the day? No, in the morning to keep us out of difficulty, jesus said, look, peter, get up and pray. If you don’t, you’re gonna get into difficulty. Peter was bragging when he should have been trusting, he was sleeping when he should have been praying. And if you are a prayer list, christian, you are prideful christian. You’re a careless christian. And when the crisis comes, I’m afraid that you’re not going to make it. I think the worst thing about our prayer list. This is not our preciousness, it’s our arrogance, it’s our pride that keeps us from praying. Here’s the third thing that that caused him uh to deny the Lord. And it was fleshly courage. Now I said, I’m talking about holy boldness, not fleshly courage, fleshly courage. Maybe. Uh the thing that is our problem. Look in verse 33 he said unto him, Peter said to jesus, I’m ready to go with the both into prison and to death. Now, what was Peter’s strongest point? Peter’s strongest point was his self confidence in his courage. If you study the great saints of God in the bible, you’re gonna find out that when they fell they did not fall at their weakest point. They felt the strongest point. Have you ever thought about that? They fell at the strongest point. What I’m trying to say is, folks, listen to me, your adversary will sift you, your abilities will sabotage you. When you learn or decide that you’re going to go out and live this christian life in your own flesh, you’re gonna go down, you’re going to find uh, that you’re gonna fail. Do you know what sin is? I’ve often said this sin is an unexpected opportunity, compounded by an undetected weakness and an unprotected life. Put those together, an unexpected opportunity. You don’t know this is gonna happen until it happens. Listen, your adversary will sift you. Your abilities will sabotage you. Number three. Your actions will surprise you. Your actions will surprise you. Look in verse 33 he said, Lord, I’m ready to go with the both into prison and to death. It is obvious he did not expect to deny jesus christ. What does the bible say in first Corinthians chapter 10 and verse 12. Wherefore let him to think of the standard take heed lest default proverbs 28 verse 26 I’ve already mentioned this. He that trusted his own heart is a fool, Jeremiah 17 verse nine. The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked and so many times we have an idea. Oh, when it happens to me, I’ll stand true. I’ll stand tall. Well, friend. If you are trusting in your own abilities? I’m gonna tell you, your actions are going to surprise you and you will not be as strong as you think that you are. Now what about this man? Simon Peter? Well, he failed. But he learned that failure was not final. I don’t think there’s a one of us as we look back on our lives. But what we would say, Dear Lord, I’ve not been the courageous christian that I should have been. I could have been. Well, I told you I would give you three truths that would challenge you and one that will comfort you. Here’s the comforting truth. Are you ready for this? Your advocate will secure you? Your advocate will secure you. You have an adversary, but you also have an advocate. Look at this! What a blessing this is. Look again in verse 31 the Lord said Simon Simon behold satan hath desired to have you that he may sift you as wheat. That’s the adversary. But I have prayed for thee that thy faith fail not, don’t you like that? That’s the Advocate. You know what the word advocate means. Just simply a fancy name for lawyer. Satan wants to sift us. Why does he want to sift us? Satan wants to sift us to find those impurities. That dirt that trash that’s in our lives and point the finger of accusation at us before the throne of God. But when he does that, Thank God, we have an advocate put down in your margin first, john chapter two And verse one, my little Children. These things write I unto you, that you say not, john is not encouraging us to sin because we can get forgiveness. No, no, no, no. These things write I unto you that you said not, but now notice this. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the father, jesus christ. The righteous. The Bible teaches in hebrews chapter seven and verse 25 that he ever lives to make intercession for us. The adversary will sift you. Your abilities will sabotage you. Your actions will surprise you, but your advocate will secure you, Jesus will secure you. Peter satan wants you, he wants to sift you as wheat. But Peter, I have prayed for you the soul that on jesus hath leaned for repose. I will never know never dessert to its foes. That soul though all hell should endeavor to shake. I’ll never know, never know. Never forsake. That’s the promise of our Lord. And this same cursing stumbling failing Simon, Peter became the flaming apostle Pentecost because Jesus christ prayed for him. You know you know what I love about this, Jesus knew, Peter better than Peter knew Peter and he knew two things about Peter. He knew the worst about him and he knew the best about him. He knew that he would deny the savior. But he also knew he had faith. He said, I prayed for you that your faith fail not, I prayed for you, that your faith fail, not Jesus could see past the crust, Jesus could see past the weakness, Jesus could see past the foibles and the failures. And Jesus saw down in his heart, Faith and friend, that’s what secures you. Your faith in an advocate who will never leave you nor forsake you. And that to me is an encouraging thing. Why did Jesus allow him to be sifted? I mean, could Jesus have stopped it? Of course he could have. He has. He has complete authority over Satan. Some people don’t believe in eternal security. You know what they believe they say. Well, no man can take you out the hand of jesus. But the devil could. Do you really believe the devil could. And if he could, why hasn’t he? You think about, think about if if he could, why hasn’t he? Well, maybe he’s just been nice to you. Well, that’s a strange doctrine, isn’t it? You’re going to heaven by the goodness of the devil. Think about. No, the only reason he hasn’t, because he can’t Satan has desired you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I prayed for you that your faith fail not. Do you think jesus prayers would fail? No, he said, when he prayed concerning Lazarus father, I thank you. That you always hear me. He never had a prayer that fell to the ground and he has prayed for us and he ever lives to make intercession for us. Well, then, if satan is limited in his power, why did the Lord allow it? Well, satan heard peter and boastful, Peter, Satan said, I know some things about him. I’d like to get him and myself, jesus said, yep, that’s a good idea. Go ahead, Jesus allowed it. When the bible says Satan has desired you, it means he’s had to ask permission. He’s had to ask permission. And and the Lord allowed it. And you see, God allows the devil to come against us to reveal to us many times what was in our heart. And he’ll do that to you, and he’ll do that to me now. Does that mean therefore, that that if jesus, if jesus is protecting us, it doesn’t make any difference how we live or what we do. Old folks listen, Look in verse 22, Peter went out and wept bitterly better. Don’t you think for 1 2nd that if you can’t lose your salvation, you have nothing to lose. When you deny christ. Do you know who the happiest man on earth is? The man who takes shame for jesus christ? I read about those early apostles apostles in the bible says they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing, rejoicing they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name worthy. I can tell you my own personal life those times when I have taken slings and arrows for jesus christ have been the highest moments of joy I’ve ever known, I’m gonna tell you something else. The most miserable man on earth is not an unsaved man, Our woman, The most miserable person on earth is a saved man or woman out of fellowship with jesus christ. Is that not true? The most joyful people are those who stand for jesus Simon Peter learned this lesson, and he then no longer boastful, but he wrote in his epistle, Be sober, be vigilant. Your adversary. The devil goes about as a roaring lion seeking who is seeking whom he may devour. Peter learned to renounce his self confidence, put his confidence in jesus christ became the flaming apostle of Pentecost. And the bible says that when those people saw them, they marveled when they saw the boldness of peter and john, they marveled and took knowledge of them that they had been with jesus. That’s the difference. That’s the difference. You know when that rooster crowed, you know what Peter knew when that rooster crowed? You know, jesus said Peter before the rooster crows, you’re going to deny me three times. How many of you were ever raised, where you had roosters? That crow in the morning. Let me see something. Some of you kids never seen a rooster two things about a rooster friend in the morning. Number one, you can’t make him crow Number two, you can’t keep him from crowing, is that right, alarm clock with feathers. That’s all. Now, you think all the roosters in Jerusalem and Our God kept every one of them quiet until that precise moment. That precise moment he made one of them crow, just like that. Do you know what? Peter had to know? I’ll tell you what he knew. My God is still in control. You know why? Why? Peter denied jesus. He was petrified. They were taking him to the cross. It looked like he was out of control. He’d been beaten, denied, cursed, whipped, falsely accused on his way to calvary. It looked like everything was out of control. Then the rooster crowed and he was still in perfect control. Friend, you listen to me. We’re on the winning side. There’s not a blade of grass that moves without my father’s permission and I’m gonna stand true to him. God helping me. Not in my own strength, but he’s there, secures father seal the message to our hearts and father help us to find strength In time of crisis that we’ll never be ashamed of you and never deny your name. Amen friend. Aren’t you grateful that no matter who you are, where you are or what you are, That God has a way of plan for you. Oh, his mercies are new every morning and his grace extends to all people regardless of their background. That’s the reason this message has been God speaking to you, telling you that he loves you and he wants to save you and he will save you if you’ll trust him right now. will you do it, will you pray Lord jesus, I need you, I want you you died for my sins. You shed your blood for me. You were raised from the dead. You’re able to save me and you will save me if I trust you and I do trust you, jesus, come into my life right now and begin now to make me the person you want me to be. Thank you, Thank you jesus for saving me, pray it and mean it and then write to us and let us know. We’ll rejoice with you and we’ll send you some literature to help you to get started in your christian life. We hope that today’s message has been an encouragement to you as we explore these fundamentals of the christian faith with Adrian Rogers. You can stream this message again and download Pastor Rogers outlines and notes on this message all at L WF dot org or the my L WF app while you’re there. Be sure to check out our new bible studies on these same topics as well as Pastor Rogers audio series. Back to the basics also available at L Wf dot org At LWF.org. 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