“Never say never” was one of my mom’s favorite sayings. She said it as if she had experience so I would stop and ponder my “never”. I will never eat asparagus! Years later, I developed a taste for it because my husband likes it. I will never learn to drive! Days later, I was driving. I will never learn to crochet! Being 8 months pregnant and told to take it easy with my third child, I learned to crochet so I could make Christmas presents for others.
Seriously, our “I will nevers” just don’t carry a lot of weight. We are human and we are fickle with our “never” statements when circumstances change. I will never stop loving you and then when we are betrayed, we reevaluate our love. I will never stop making you breakfast in the morning…I did that the first day after we were married. Haven’t done it since, because we both worked different shifts. You get the picture.
Peter proclaims “I will never deny you” to Jesus, His beloved Master. Jesus knows he will and tells Peter it will happen.
A few hours later, that is exactly what happened.
Jesus Predicts Peter’s Denial
“‘I will strike the shepherd,
and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.’
31 Then Jesus told them, “This very night you will all fall away on account of me, for it is written:
32 But after I have risen, I will go ahead of you into Galilee.”
33 Peter replied, “Even if all fall away on account of you, I never will.”
34 “Truly I tell you,” Jesus answered, “this very night, before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times.”
35 But Peter declared, “Even if I have to die with you, I will never disown you.” And all the other disciples said the same.
THINK ABOUT IT…
Most of us know the rest of the story. Peter denies knowing Jesus just as predicted. The rooster crowed on cue after the third cry of denial. But remember, Peter was one of few disciples who risked his life to get as close to Jesus as possible. The rest of the disciples ran away! He was completely overwhelmed by what was about to happen to Jesus even though the Lord predicted the scene.
Peter had to know what was happening. Curiosity got the best of Him. Peter’s human character of “shooting from the hip” as Jesus predicted because He knew Peter well, comes out in the form of denial of His beloved Teacher and Friend.
Never say never? I believe Peter believed his “never” at the time he said it. But then his life was threatened and he had a decision to make. If he denied knowing Jesus, he could stay by the fire to see what was happening to Jesus, but was it worth disowning Jesus?
One thing we do know, Peter was regretfully repentant of his denial when he looked into the eyes of the beaten body of Jesus as He passed by in the courtyard from one trial to another. Jesus forgave him. What kind of love is this? The Love of God.
When our lives are threatened or at the very least our reputations or popularity, what would we do?
Do we deny, take flight, keep silent, mix in with the crowd or act as if you never knew Jesus? It’s worth thinking about before it happens. This world is changing rapidly. Satan is on the move to gain an entire generation who never knew Christ.
Where do we stand? Will we let it happen? If we do, is this be a form of denial?
Lord, Help us. Help us in those times when we are pushed to stand for what we believe. I love you with all my heart, mind and soul. I need you every hour. Be our strength, wisdom, boldness to stand firm in what you have taught us. All my hope is in you.
In Jesus Name, Amen