Saturday, March 10, 2007

What would you have done?

When Jesus was arrested by the priests and their thugs, Peter followed at a distance.
66While Peter was below in the courtyard, one of the servant girls of the high priest came by. 67When she saw Peter warming himself, she looked closely at him."You also were with that Nazarene, Jesus," she said. 68But he denied it. "I don't know or understand what you're talking about," he said, and went out into the entryway.
Mark 14.66-68
Do you ever wonder what you would have done in that circumstance? I suppose some of us think we wouldn't have denied knowing Jesus, but I don't think most of us can imagine the pressure and sense of danger, or what was going through Peter at this point.

In a way, one could say Peter didn't know the man being beaten and abused by the priests and soldiers; he knew a powerful rabbi, who he thought would bring back the kingdom of God and Israel's glory.

But that's quibbling. He said he didn't know what the girl was talking about.

Was that awful? Yes, it was very bad.

Would I have done any different? I might not have even made it to the priest's courtyard.

But the important thing is this: No matter how bad Peter's failure was, as we know from other Scriptures, he was restored to fellowship and became an important leader in the church.

And that's the good news I take from this passage -- multiple failures don't disqualify one from serving the Lord. So it is with my failures -- or yours; because of God's great love for us, shown on the cross, we can have fellowship with him; more than that, he can and will use us to achieve his ends on the earth.

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