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).

Learn more in Dr. Michael Youssef’s sermon series Identity Transformation: LISTEN NOW | WATCH NOW

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About The Author

Dr. Michael Youssef, Ph.D.

Even before he was born, it is clear that God had a vision for Michael Youssef. His mother was in poor health when she became pregnant with Michael, and because his life was in danger at the time of birth, the doctor recommended terminating the pregnancy. An abortion was scheduled. But God intervened and sent the family pastor to reassure them that God was involved in this pregnancy. He told them not to be afraid and that the child would be "born to serve the Lord." Michael's parents accepted the pastor's message as a message from God and obeyed. His mother gave birth, and lived to see him give his life to the Lord at the age of sixteen.

Believing that God had called him out of Egypt, Michael sought an exit visa in a time in which no university student was allowed to have a passport or leave the country. God intervened again, and miraculously he managed to acquire a visa. He immigrated to Australia, where he studied at Moore Theological College in Sydney, was ordained as a pastor, and met Elizabeth who became his wife.

The Youssefs came to America in 1977, and in 1978 Michael received a master's degree in theology at Fuller Theological Seminary in California. Then he earned a doctorate in social anthropology at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. Michael served nearly ten years in the Haggai Institute, traveling around the world more than 32 times, teaching courses in evangelism and leadership. He rose to the position of Managing Director at the age of 31 years. The family settled in Atlanta, and in 1984, Michael became a citizen of the United States, making his dream of many years come true.

He founded The Church of The Apostles in 1987 with fewer than 40 adults with the mission of "Equipping the Saints and Searching for the Lost". The church has since grown to be a congregation of over 3,000 people today. This church has driven the international ministry of Leading the Way. While it is heard by millions at home and abroad, behind every message preached through radio waves, is the heart of a pastor, willing to nurture and care for these people. Clearly God has uniquely equipped Dr. Youssef to speak to a global audience. The path he has taken has given him an understanding and firm grasp of the Scriptures that transcend cultures. He preaches, teaches and calls with a sincere, based on the authority of the inerrant, inspired Word of God. With his personal knowledge of the Holy Land, its history and culture, Dr. Michael Youssef transmits life to listeners all over the world.

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