But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like.
When I was in the Arab world last year, I met an underground blogger (pen name: Al Edwards) who said this:
“Jesus informs his disciple, Simon Peter, that Satan has demanded permission to sift him as wheat. In Job chapter 1, we see Satan complaining that God has built a hedge of protection around Job so that Satan can do nothing to harm Job. Satan has to ask permission from God to harm Peter and Job, and it was necessary for God to remove his hand of protection from them both so that Satan could afflict them.
“I think we can safely assume there are many such times that Satan demands to do likewise to us.”
Pastor Sam Crabtree is Bethlehem's Pastor for Small Groups, North.