But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.
Note 2 at Lu 22:32: Jesus prayed for Peter that his faith would not fail. The way that most of us look at things, Jesus' prayer didn't work. However, we know that is not the case. Therefore, from God's point of view, Peter's faith didn't fail. Losing a battle doesn't mean we have lost the war.
God doesn't see us as failures, just learners. God can redeem the worst "failure" and work it together for good (Ro 8:28). We need to think like God.
Note 3 at Lu 22:32: The concept of "conversion" is mentioned in the Holy Scriptures at least fourteen times (Ps 19:7, 51:13; Isa 1:27, 6:10, 60:5; Mt 13:15, 18:3; Mr 4:12; Joh 12:40; Ac 3:19, 15:3, 28:27; and Jas 5:19-20). The basic meaning of the term is a turning or returning to God. This implies a turning away from sin and a turning to God. Repentance and putting faith in God would be corresponding synonyms to conversion.
The theological basis for conversion lies in the truth of the atonement. Although man lapses into sin, the truth of the atonement remains. When people turn to God in repentance and faith, the effects of the atonement--reconciliation and forgiveness--avail.
The Apostle Paul expressed the act of conversion in this way: turning "to God from idols to serve the living and true God" (1Th 1:9) and "to open their [the Gentiles'] eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me [Jesus]" (Ac 26:18, brackets mine).
In the context of Lu 22, Peter's faith was shaken. He denied the Lord, but he did not reject Him. Jesus' admonition to Peter was that when he turned back again to Him (converted), he was to strengthen the brethren.
Note 4 at Lu 22:32: Jesus was instructing Peter to get back into ministry after he repented of his denial. If Jesus had not given Peter this command, many people might have doubted that Peter should have been in a position of leadership. Indeed, Peter himself must have doubted whether or not he was fit, for after Jesus' resurrection, the Lord again admonished Peter three times to serve Him by ministering to His sheep (Joh 21:15-17).
The Word shows us that Peter went on to fulfill the Lord's command (Ac 2:14, 38, 3:6, 12, 4:8, 5:3, 8-9, 29, 8:20, 9:40, 10:25-26, 44; and Ga 2:7-8) and was so effective in his ministry to the saints that Paul called him a pillar of the church (Ga 2:9).
Either the Lord made an exception for Peter and the other apostles because they were not yet "born again" or He established a precedent that there can be forgiveness and reinstatement back into the ministry after sin.
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