A Message from Melissa Reinert.
Over the weekend I took part in a three-day Bible study to prepare my heart for Easter Sunday. Last night’s reading was especially thoughtful and impactful. It involved Peter’s denial which is ultimately a lesson in the Lord’s beautiful redemption.
In Luke 22: 54-62, we see Peter following at a distance as Jesus is brought into the high priest’s house. When they had kindled a fire in the middle of the courtyard, Peter sat among them. A girl staring intently at Peter, accused him of being a disciple.
Peter denied it.
A little while later, another made the same accusation.
Peter denied it.
An hour later, another “confidently affirmed” that Peter knew Jesus.
Peter was even more adamant: “Man, I do not know what you are saying!”
Immediately, while he was still speaking, the rooster crowed. And in the most heart-breaking manner that I can imagine, the Lord turned and looked at Peter. Peter immediately recalled what Jesus had told him just a short while ago: “Before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times.”
Peter turned to solitude and wept bitterly.
I thought to myself, I can’t begin to imagine the sinking deep-cutting pain Peter must have felt at the look of Jesus. But then, I remembered, I’m a sinner too.
I have not always lived pleasing to the Lord. I’ve done things that scream: “I do not know Him.”
Then I thought of that look. That look of betrayal, that look of abandonment that Peter must have seen on Jesus’ face. Oh, how many times have I caused that expression on my Lord’s face.
Like Peter, I felt helpless. Hopeless. My sin has once again taken Jesus to the cross. But, the glory of Easter Sunday, is that Jesus didn’t stay on the cross. No. In three days, He rose from the dead.
And shortly after His defeat of death, he met with Peter. In this conversation Jesus gently dealt with Peter’s sin and offered Him forgiveness and purpose – to feed His sheep and follow Him.
I think of how Jesus has forgiven me and given me the opportunity to follow Him and share His love. Oh, it’s a great feeling that trumps all defeat of sin. Indeed, redemption is a beautiful thing.