"Jesus said to him, 'Truly I say to you that this very night, before a rooster crows, you will deny Me three times.' Peter said to Him, 'Even if I have to die with You, I will not deny You.' All the disciples said the same thing too." Matt 26:34-35
Peter's denial of Jesus is one of the most sobering and tragic narratives in the New Testament Scriptures. The argument could easily be made that Peter was the Lord's closest companion and most staunch supporter. He was always one who seemed to take the lead among the apostles, the one whose faith allowed him to walk on water and the one who used violence to defend him in the Garden of Gethsemane. How then could it be that he would be the one whose denial is graphically documented for all time?
Beloved a better question is "Have I denied Jesus?" Our knee jerk reaction is "No!" We may, however, need to rest our knees and give the question some serious thought. Denials can take many forms. Have you ever taken a position contrary to what the bible teaches? Have you ever said or done anything that is counter to your faith. Have you failed to stand up for what you know is right or looked the other way when you saw someone in obvious need? Do your friends know you as one person and your church family knows you as another? Peter is certainly the poster child for such denial, but all of the other apostles made the same claim of fidelity and each of them, except John, abandoned him in his greatest our of need.
In truth, none of us are exempt from this great sin. Despite our occasional lack of faith, it is important to know that we serve a loving and forgiving Lord. Peter was famously restored to fellowship and standing among the apostles when Jesus asked him three times, "Do you love me?" His answer was in the affirmative then Jesus said, "Follow me."
Rejoicing in the Lord,