"Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, to sift you as wheat; but I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fall not."
3ur $ord was declaring a central truth: it was eter9s faith He was see'ing to guard: for well He 'new that when faith is bro'en down, the foundations of spiritual life give way, and the entire structure of religious e6perience falls. (t was eter9s faith which needed guarding. Hence Christ9s solicitude for the welfare of His disciple9s soul and His determination to fortify eter9s faith by His own allprevailing prayer. (n his
, eter has this idea in mind when spea'ing of growth in grace as a measure of safety in the Christian life, and as implying fruitfulness.
"!nd besides this," he declares, "giving diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness."
3f this additioning process, faith was the startingpoint the basis of the other graces of the Spirit. /aith was the foundation on which other things were to be built. eter does not en-oin his readers to add to wor's or gifts or virtues but to
. Much depends on starting right in this business of growing in grace. #here is a 5ivine order, of which eter was aware: and so he goes on to declare that we are to give diligence to ma'ing our calling and election sure, which election is rendered certain adding to faith which, in turn, is done by constant, earnest praying. #hus faith is 'ept alive by prayer, and every step ta'en, in this adding of grace to grace, is accompanied by prayer. #he faith which pcreates powerful praying is the faith which centres itself on a powerful erson. /aith in Christ9s ability to
, is the faith which prays greatly. #hus the leper lay hold upon the power of Christ. $ord, if #hou wilt, he cried, #hou canst ma'e me clean. (n this instance, we are shown how faith centered in Christ9s ability to
, and how it secured the healing power. (t was concerning this very point, that 8esus *uestioned the blind men who came to Him for healing
"elieve ye that I am able to do this#" $e asks. "They said unto $im, %ea, &ord. Then touched $e their eyes, saying, !ccording to your faith be it unto you."
(t was to inspire faith in His ability to
that 8esus left behind Him, that last, great statement, which, in the final analysis, is a ringing challenge to faith. All power, He declared, is given unto Me in heaven and in earth.
The 'ecessity of (rayer
by astor .M. "ounds, Chapter 1