Peter Denies Jesus
Open Your Bible
Mark 14:26-31, Mark 14:66-72
Text: Mark 14:26-31, 66-72
Before I was married, I told myself I would never be unkind to my husband. Occasionally failing at that, I promised myself I would never holler at my children. When the children and the hollering came along, I vowed that I would try to eat fiber for breakfast.
I was such a great wife, mom, and eater of fiber before I actually had to do those things. It’s like the way I felt about parenting before I was a parent — the judgy way I looked at a tantrum-throwing child sporting snow boots, a runny nose, and hair that was last brushed three days ago. I always thought, “I will NEVER parent like that!” Baby, was I surprised to have a husband, children, and unlimited breakfast cereal choices as an adult.
When I read this story of Peter denying Christ, I see myself. I’m that loudmouth who would stand up and promise, “Lord, I would NEVER deny you!” Jesus was addressing them all, but Peter is the guy who is so sure he’s going to get it right that he argues with Jesus.
All the disciples hid and denied Christ in their own way that night. It felt like the world was ending. I’m sure they found all kinds of ways to justify their actions, just like I would have. Reading this story, it’s easy for me to say, “I, at least, would have stood with Jesus, unlike those cowardly disciples.” But, based on my track record of vow-keeping, I would probably have hid like greasy rat.
For crying out loud, what is wrong with me? In all my best intentions to do right, I fall away, again and again, and stinking again. Just like Peter, I psych myself up, “I won’t do it wrong this time. This time for sure!” But, in the end, I’m right there with Peter, listening to the rooster crow and holding my head in my hands.
Jesus knew this would happen. He knew His disciples we going to fail Him. He knew I would get parenting and marriage wrong, day after day. But this is why He came. This is exactly why He came.
Don’t miss this moment to see your need for Him. It’s the first step of the gospel: just to see that you need Him. See it.
When Jesus tells Peter he will deny Him three times, He’s not clanging the final bell of doom for Peter. He’s confronting Peter’s sin, but He’s not rejecting Peter’s salvation. We, like Peter, must see the true nature of our sin, to see the truth of our salvation.
When we see our sin and our need of Christ, our response must be like Peter’s—to weep bitterly for our betrayals, and to repent. Take your head in your hands and weep when you need to, then rise in repentance and walk in a new direction.
Jesus knows you, like He knew Peter. Despite all your adamant protestations that you’ll never deny Him again, Jesus knows your sin and He loves you still.