Focal Passage: Luke 22:54-62; Acts 4:8-13
I’ve always had a bit of a soft spot for the apostle Peter. Perhaps it is because he often spoke without thinking; a bad habit that I share with him. Or, maybe it is because he drew back from associating with Gentiles for fear of the crowd; a tendency to avoid conflict that many of us can identify with. But, if I am honest, it is because he denied the Lord on the night he was arrested.
The soft spot is not for his denial, but for his humanity.
Peter was flesh and bone, just as we are. And he failed our Lord at a critical moment. Sadly, because of the connectedness of our world today, our failures can often be broadcast to the whole world in a manner of seconds.
Just as Peter’s failure was very public and very painful, his failure was not final. Because of God’s grace, our moments of failure do not have to be permanent. While it may be easy to think that we would never have done what Peter did, we need to remember that his failure is a reminder that the strongest among us can fail.
It was, after all, Peter who made the glorious declaration that Jesus was “the Christ, the son of the Living God” (Matthew 16:16). And yet, later, he would call down curses on himself to prove he did not know Jesus (Matthew 26:74).
But, then, an amazing thing happened.
This same Peter who had called down curses on himself, had seen the risen Lord, been restored by Him, and received the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost.
His horrific failure was now a thing of the past.
The one who cowered before a servant girl’s questions now stood fearlessly before the most powerful religious body in Israel and boldly declared Jesus to be the Messiah (Acts 4:8-13). What a powerful reminder for us that failure does not need to be permanent. But, God’s grace is sufficient to redeem us from our worst failure.