By Michael Youssef, Ph D. 07/24/20
Peter’s denial of Christ was a horrendous failure. Only hours before, he had confessed that Jesus was the Son of God. Then he claimed that he did not even know the Lord.
At some point, each of us has fallen into temptation. This is exactly what happened to Peter. Pridefully, he had said, “Even if all fall away, I will not” (Mark 14:29). Peter’s intentions were honorable. After all, Jesus had changed Peter’s name for a purpose—he became Petra, meaning “the rock.”
Jesus was direct with Peter: “[T]oday—yes, tonight—before the rooster crows twice you yourself will disown me three times” (Mark 14:30). Peter, however, persisted to tell Jesus that he never would leave His side. Later that evening, he ran from the Lord out of fear of arrest.
Peter was not the only one that night to make this promise. Mark writes, “And all the others said the same” (Mark 14:31). We often associate the denial of Christ only with Peter, but the Truth is that each of us would have been tempted to do the same.
Later, Peter wrote a letter to other believers who were facing tremendous trials, temptations, and sorrows. He told them:
Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, . . . And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. (1 Peter 5:8-10).
In humility, make it your goal to live a holy life. Ask God to protect you and to give you the strength and wisdom you need to honor God and stand against Satan’s attacks.
Prayer: Lord, my desire is to live a holy life. Please protect me from the enemy and grant me the strength and wisdom to stand against temptation. When I fail, help me not to give up but to let Your love carry me through. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
“Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God” (2 Corinthians 7:1).