The soldiers took Jesus, not to a public court, but to the home of the wealthy, powerful high priest. It took courage for Peter, a simple fisherman, to be in that courtyard at all. Peter, uninvited, bravely followed Jesus into that courtyard. Would you have?
- Peter walked on water (Matthew 14:28-29). Peter came right out and said Jesus was the Messiah (Mark 8:27-29). Peter insisted that he would go with Jesus “to prison and to death” (Luke 22:33). How did Peter show his personal courage and boldness in the crisis of Jesus’ arrest? What was he still missing that led him to fail?
- As Pastor Hamilton asks in his day 18 devotional reading, when has your faith ever required courage of you? What are some of the ways that faith can call for courage even when you aren’t facing arrest or physical danger?
So I have been doing this Christian thing for nearly a half century now… (where does the time go?!) and it wasn’t until we got to this point in the study of “24 Hours that Changed the World” that I realized that Peter was more than a chicken…as it were…
Sure things will go poorly for him as the story unfolds, and we will get to that tomorrow, but today Peter is a Peter of courage. In all honesty I had never noticed this before! I had always defaulted to labeling Peter as chicken hearted for denying the Lord in his hour of need. But you know what…he was the only disciple that managed to make it this far, the rest of them scattered and where in hiding, Peter was the only one bold enough to make it this far.
Peter’s story will continue to unfold and there is grace and forgiveness in it, but the story thus far is that Peter did follow Christ to his limit, it took courage to go this far and through the cross and the grave Peter’s courage would grow and he would become the “rock” the name Jesus had bestowed on him.
I think we often are paralyzed by the fear that we will fall short like Peter, so we don’t ever give something a shot. Step out in leading a small group or ministry…why I might make a mistake…best not, standup for your faith, call someone or something out for being unjust…best not someone might think ill of me…and the list can go on and on. You know you might be right, but even if you attempt to do something in faith and you fail and it dies, the good news is that Jesus is in the habit of bringing new life even in the midst of our failures, he specializes in resurrection!