Read Luke 22:54-62.
Jesus had told him it would happen: “[B]efore the rooster crows today, you will deny three times that you know me” (Luke 22:34). But Peter had convinced himself he would be strong for Jesus, no matter what came their way.
But that evening by the fire in the courtyard of the high priest’s residence, Peter succumbed to his fear. “I don’t know him,” he said (Luke 22:57), and he repeated this cold sentiment twice more. As the words were leaving his mouth the third time, Peter’s eyes met Jesus’ eyes. The reality of what he had done rocked Peter to his core in an instant, “And he went outside and wept bitterly” (v. 62).
A few hours later, Jesus was crucified. To Peter, it seemed all was lost. He had abandoned Jesus when it counted most, and now the Lord was gone.
But, of course, Jesus’ story wasn’t over, and neither was Peter’s. Our God is the God of second chances. Because of the resurrection, He doesn’t turn away anyone who comes to Him truly and deeply repentant.
When an angel spoke to the women who came to Jesus’ tomb on Easter morning, he said to them, “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter, . . .” (Mark 16:6-7). Did you catch that?
It’s just two words—and Peter—but those two simple words give us all great hope. They are the application of the Gospel. Though Peter’s sin was great, Jesus’ compassion was greater. Peter wasn’t met with words of condemnation, but words of affection and encouragement. He was met with a second chance.
Though Peter must have imagined Jesus could no longer use him, the resurrected Jesus had a new commission for him all the same. He told the fisherman-turned-apostle, “Feed my sheep” (John 21:17), and He did so three times, once for every denial Peter uttered. The message was clear: All is forgiven.
The power of Jesus’ resurrection assures every repentant sinner of a second chance. If you’re in need of a second chance, don’t wait. Repent of your sins, make a clean break from your past, and come to Jesus today! He stands ready to receive you with open arms.
Prayer: God, thank You for Your incredible mercy toward me. Thank You that Your sacrifice is mighty to save—that Your grace is sufficient. I repent of my sins and ask for Your forgiveness and Your strength to follow You today and every day. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
“The Lord turned and looked straight at Peter. Then Peter remembered the word the Lord had spoken to him: ‘Before the rooster crows today, you will disown me three times’” (Luke 22:61).
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