Simon, Simon

(Luke 22:31-34)


1. Textual observations:

   * Peter – Symeon (Hebrew); Cephas (Aramaic); Peter (petros - rock, Greek)

   * Often called Simon in reference to home & family (Mark 1:29-30; Luke 4:38) & w/Jesus (Matt. 16:17; Mk. 4:37)

   * Jesus addresses him, “Simon, Simon” indicating concern/stress (Luke 10:41; Mt. 23:37; Mt. 27:46)

   * “Behold” is Greek for “eidon”- watch out!

   * Satan = adversary, sometimes used generically (Num. 22:22)

   * “Asked” or “desires” = exaiteomai (Greek) means “demand”

   * Satan demands to have you (plural – apostles & all of us). Jesus made supplication for Peter ( sou - singular)

   * “Sifting” – separating wheat from chaff by throwing into air. Wheat and chaff represent Godly & wicked (Mt. 3:12)

   * Satan wants us all to be chaff & burn w/him eternally (Mt. 25:41; Rev. 20:10)

   * Christ prayed that Peter’s faith (Mt. 16:16) might hold fast. Peter’s faith would weaken, but grow stronger (Lk. 24:34)

   * W/renewed faith, Peter is admonished to strengthen his brothers. Catholics claim this shows primacy of Peter. Not so!

            * Peter not the only one who strengthens brethren, others did, too (Acts 14:22;15:32; 15:41; 18:23; I Thess. 3:2).

            * Paul wanted to establish brethren in Rome (Romans 1:11). Odd if Peter was head of church in that city!

   * This passage shows Peter’s weakness (Chrysostom)

   * Peter ignored Christ’s warning, boasting “I’m ready to follow You to prison & death.” Ready = prepared (Mk. 14:15)

   * Mt. & Mark report Peter makes claim using present tense wording (Mt. 26:35; Mk. 14:31). Christ says Peter will

      utterly deny” Him.

   * Jesus says, “You’ll deny me 3 times before the rooster crows”. Roosters served as “alarm clocks.” Mark wrote of

      evening (6-9 p.m.); midnight (9 p.m. -12 a.m.); “cock crowing” (12-3 a.m.- 2 periods of crowing); & 3-6 a.m.


2. What can we learn?

   * Jesus as prophet (Isa. 41:23) – foretold of Peter’s denial (including time frame), repentance, and future service

   * Jesus warning, “watch out” shows one can lose his salvation (I Peter 5:8; Judas – Jn. 17:12)

   * Christ knew the reality of Satan (Mt. 4:1-11) Devil WILL flee IF we resist him!!! (Jas. 4:7).

   * Balance between our free moral agency & God’s divine care. Christ our mediator (I Tim. 2:5; Heb. 4:14-16; I Jn. 2:1)

   * All 4 Gospel writers record Peter’s fall – Bible is from God! Peter an early pillar of church (Gal. 2:9), yet look what

      happened to him (Matthew 26:69; Mark 14:66; Luke 22:55; John 18:15)

   * Text shows danger of overconfidence! (Mt. 26:33; Mk. 14:29). “Let me lay down  my life now” (Jn. 13:37).

   * Remember I Cor. 10:12: “Take heed lest ye fall.” (see also Rom. 12:3; Mt. 26:75)

   * We can come back from sin IF WE REALLY WANT TO!!!

   * Prison & death – Acts 4. Thrown in and told to stop preaching. Imprisoned again. Angel “broke them out” (Acts 5:17)

            * Jews would have killed them, but let them off w/a beating & apostles rejoiced! (Acts 5:40-41).

            * Peter so comfortable in prison he could sleep between 2 guards chained to him (Acts 12)

            * Jesus gave him a glimpse of his grim future (John 21:18-19). Over time, Peter saw it coming and continued to

                stand firm for the faith (II Peter 1:13-14).

* Evidence shows that Peter died a martyr in Rome. Clement says that Peter “suffered martyrdom” and “departed to the

   place of glory due him.”


May the same be said of each one of us at the appropriate time. Are you ready for Final Judgment?







                                                                                                                                    R.W. McAlister 6/8/08 p.m.