Thursday, March 16, 2017

Peter Denies The Lord

Mark 14:66-72

“And as Peter was beneath in the palace, there cometh one of the maids of the high priest: And when she saw Peter warming himself, she looked upon him, and said, And thou also wast with Jesus of Nazareth.

But he denied, saying, I know not, neither understand I what thou sayest. And he went out into the porch; and the cock crew.” (Mark 14:66-68)

While the hearing for Jesus was being held in the High Priests house, Peter was down in the palace with the servants and common people.  One of the High Priest’s servants recognized him as a follower of Jesus.   Peter said he didn’t know what she was talking about, implying she was mistaken.  He went out into the courtyard to get away from her.  When he did, he heard the rooster crow the first time, probably about 3:330-4:00 o’clock in the morning. 

“And a maid saw him again, and began to say to them that stood by, This is one of them.  And he denied it again. And a little after, they that stood by said again to Peter, Surely thou art one of them: for thou art a Galilaean, and thy speech agreeth thereto.

But he began to curse and to swear, saying, I know not this man of whom ye speak.” (Mark 14:69-71)

While he was still on the porch, another maid saw Peter and told the others he had been with Jesus.  That time Peter clearly denied having been with Jesus.  A little later, another one told the people he had been with Jesus and insisted that his Galilean accent clearly gave him away as having accompanied Jesus.  Peter began to curse and swear like the fisherman he had been in an effort to convince them he was not a disciple of Jesus.  He insisted he didn’t even know who Jesus was. 

“And the second time the cock crew. And Peter called to mind the word that Jesus said unto him, Before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice. And when he thought thereon, he wept.” (Mark 14:72)

The rooster crowed again, probably about 4:30 am.  It was only about six or eight hours after Jesus had announced that all the disciples would be offended by what happened.  Peter had boldly spoken, insisting he would never deny Christ, as had all the other disciples.  Jesus had warned them that Peter would deny him three times before the rooster crowed the second time.    When he heard the rooster, Peter realized he had denied the Lo9rd just as he prophesied.  Suddenly he realized just how weak his faith was. 

While it is easy to condemn Peter for denying Christ we need to remember some other things he did.   He was one of the first ones to follow Jesus and the only one to walk on the water to meet him.  He was the first one to declare that they believed Jesus was the Messiah, the son of God.  He was the only one to try to defend Jesus against the mob that came to arrest him.  Clearly he had a great deal of faith in Christ, but even he succumbed to fear in a particular situation.   It seriously damaged hi pride, so that he no longer thought he was better than the others.  Unfortunately all of us have similar areas where we are vulnerable to Satanic attacks, and most of us don’t realize it until we fall for them.  Fortunately Jesus is willing to forgive and can use our failures to make us stronger.  

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