God of the Second Chance
04/04/21 – 04/07/21
God’s Forgiveness Is Irrevocable
By Michael Youssef, Ph D. 04/05/21
Read Acts 4:1-22.
It would have been natural for Peter to think that after denying Jesus three times, the Lord would disown him: The Lord is going to reject me for good now. He can never use me again. Maybe you’ve been there. Maybe you feel you’ve sinned beyond redemption, that you’ve done something so terrible, you can never be restored.
If that’s you, know this: God’s second chances are irrevocable. They’ve been paid for at the cross and assured by the resurrection. For all who are sincerely repentant, like the father in the parable of the prodigal son, God runs to embrace His lost children who have turned back to Him (see Luke 15:20).
That’s the heart of God toward the broken and repentant. No matter how terrible their sins, the power of Jesus’ resurrection assures every repentant sinner of a second chance. In fact, our God is not only the God of the second chance, but also the third chance, and the fourth chance, and the thousandth chance—even the millionth chance.
After Peter denied Jesus, the Gospels tell us he left the high priest’s courtyard and wept bitterly (see Luke 22:62). Peter’s tears were not wasted on Jesus. Likewise, your repentance is never wasted on the Lord. Can you imagine Peter’s elation when the women came and said to him, “Peter, the angel mentioned you by name. Peter, the Lord wants you to meet Him in Galilee.”
Think about this for a moment: Judas sold Jesus for thirty pieces of silver. It was not really a bigger sin than Peter’s. But unlike Peter, Judas allowed his pride to take hold of him. He would not repent. He would not return. As a result, Judas was lost. But not so with Peter.
Peter went on to be a leader in the early church. He shared the Gospel with his fellow Jews and also with Gentiles. He took the second chance God gave him and held onto it with all he had. The man who was once afraid to admit he even knew Jesus became someone who could stand before the Jewish ruling council and say, along with the apostle John, “As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard” (Acts 4:20).
No one is too sinful for God’s grace, and no one is too good. Jesus didn’t give up on Peter, and He won’t give up on you.
Prayer: Lord, thank You that the gift of salvation is irrevocable. Your faithfulness in the face of my sinfulness is astounding. May Your love and goodness change me more and more into Your likeness for Your glory. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
“As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard” (Acts 4:20)