Meanwhile, Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard. A servant woman came and said to him, “You were also with Jesus the Galilean.” But he denied it in front of all of them, saying, “I don’t know what you are talking about.” When he went over to the gate, another woman saw him and said to those who were there, “This man was with Jesus, the man from Nazareth.” With a solemn pledge, he denied it again, saying, “I don’t know the man.” A short time later those standing there came and said to Peter, “You must be one of them. The way you talk gives you away.” Then he cursed and swore, “I don’t know the man!” At that very moment the rooster crowed. Peter remembered Jesus’ words, “Before the rooster crows you will deny me three times.” And Peter went out and cried uncontrollably.
Food For Thought:
“While Jesus was on trial in the high priest’s house, Peter sat outside in the high priest’s courtyard. Peter is on trial, too, though his questioners don’t seem like people to be feared—a servant woman, another, woman, and those standing there. From the first to the third denial Peter’s responses grow stronger. A simple denial becomes a solemn pledge, and the third denial includes cursing and swearing. Moreover, he goes from denying that he knows what the servant woman is talking about to denying that he knows Jesus at all.” (The Common English Bible: Study Bible) Do you ever find yourself denying Jesus? Denying that you know who he is? That you have met him? That he has guided you and led you? Have you denied subtly or with strong statements? By our actions and our words, whether on accident or on purpose, we have all found ourselves denying the Jesus who has changed our lives. Stand for Jesus today. You have a profound faith in a saving God. You have a story to live into.
Jesus, I have denied you! I didn’t necessarily even do it on purpose, but I have found myself being quiet would I could have spoken words of justice or peace. I have found myself keeping our relationship private rather than sharing the joy of life with you. Draw me into joyful affirmation of your life and your love in my daily life. When it might be easier to deny, give me the courage to honor you! Amen.