Beyond Denial: Finding Ourselves in Peter’s Story
We are not imaginary sinners! We are great sinners who need a great Savior. And we have one in Jesus Christ who stooped so low that he was not ashamed to wash our dirty feet.
Christ calls us to find out what he is doing in the world, and then to fling ourselves wholeheartedly into his cause. Staying in the boat may be comfortable and safe, but that’s not what the life of faith is all about.
John 21 is in the Bible so that all of us Peter-types would know that though we fall again and again, by God’s grace we can keep
on getting back up. If he did it for Peter, he can do it for me and for you.
Peter’s fall proves that anyone can fall at any time so we should be warned. His restoration proves that God’s grace truly is greater than all our sin. Therefore, let sinners everywhere flee to Christ for forgiveness.
When Jesus is betrayed and arrested, Peter impulsively strikes with his sword to try to protect Him. Jesus rebukes Peter, heals Malchus’ ear and quietly submits, knowing that in the end, God’s will must be done. What should Peter have done? How does a follower of Christ react when all is lost?
Peter still speaks to us today. “If you think you’ve fallen short, if you feel like you’ve denied him, look at what happened to me.”
As it was for Peter, so it will be for all of us. Our strengths and our weaknesses lie side by side. If we live on the level of our emotions, we may find ourselves actually opposing Jesus. If we think that our understanding equals God’s will, we are bound to fall into many grievous errors.
God’s will is always good, but it’s not always comfortable. And it’s certainly not predictable. What if God blew your categories and gave you success beyond your wildest dreams? What if he let you fail miserably so he could give you overwhelming success later?