Matthew 26:33–34: “Peter answered and said to Him, ‘Even if all are made to stumble because of You, I will never be made to stumble.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Assuredly, I say to you that this night, before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times.'”

January 24th, 2022 by Pastor Ed in devotional

Peter meant every word of his bold declaration of faithfulness. But he didn’t realize he was being completely self-sufficient in that moment and was leaning on his own abilities to resist fear and temptation. And within a very short time, under the pressures surrounding the crucifixion, he folded and denied even knowing Jesus, 3 times. Of course Jesus was well aware of Peter’s flaws, even on the first day He called him to be His disciple. He also knew that this blustering disciple had a tender heart, so He extended grace to him. The first thing God instructed the angel to say after the resurrection was, “go and tell His disciples—and Peter—that He [Jesus] is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him” (Mark 16:7).  How good those words must have sounded to this radically discouraged disciple: “and Peter.”

We serve the God of the second chance, the God of another opportunity, and the God of great grace. In John 21, after His resurrection, Jesus asked Peter a penetrating question, giving him the opportunity to reaffirm his love for Jesus. Three times Jesus asked Peter, “Do you love me?” (John 21:17) The question must have pierced Peter’s heart and caused him pain. The word of God does sometimes wound us so that we can admit, repent, and receive forgiveness. It is like a surgeon’s scalpel that must cut into the flesh so that it can remove some foreign cancer. When the surgery is done, when we obey, we immediately find grace available for healing and restoration. When we feel conviction, we need to not run from it but toward it. Great grace awaits the disciple who runs into the arms of his Savior.

“LORD, may Your word heal us a little more this day.”