Summary: This is a study of Peter based on 12 Ordinary Men. It has a lot of added notes and scripture.
Note: This is a study from the book 12 Ordinary Men by John McArthur an excellent book. There is also a fill in the blank outline from Adult Bible Fellowships of First Baptist Church Orion that I have posted in the series. This is not original but worth posting for study.
Twelve Ordinary Men
And the Lord said, “Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed
for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.” - Luke 22:31-32
I. Peter’s place among the Twelve: he was the leader of the group.
a. The three groups seem to be listed in descending order based on their intimacy with Christ.
b. The men in group one had known him as the fishermen, they were all tied together by this trade.
c. Peter, at the top of all four lists, was the leader and overall spokesman of the Twelve.
The three names of each group seem to be the leader of that group.
Different personalities and interests throughout the whole group. Economics, fishermen, tax collectors, and zealots. Political wise zealots who wanted to overthrow the government at all cost, all in per say.
II. Peter’s name turns out to be quite significant.
a. His birth name, Simeon, was a very common name, kind of like Joe (There are at least 7 Simeons mentioned in the Gospel accounts). His surname was Bar-Jonah,
literally, “son of Jonah.” So his father had a common name, too. To give you a J.M.D.E. for his
birth name, it would be something like, Joe Schmo.
name (as was the case with Paul) but was used sometimes instead of and sometimes with his birth name.
Peter means “Rock” Aramic Cephas. John 1:42 “Now when Jesus looked at him, He said, ‘You are Simon the son of Jonah. You shall be called Cephas’ (which translated, A Stone).” Apparently the first words Jesus ever spoke to Peter.
c. It appears that Jesus was very purposeful with his use of Peter’s names. By nature, Simon
was brash and undependable. His nickname, “the Rock” was a constant reminder of how he ought to
act. It is interesting to note how the gospel writer’s use “Simon” to refer either to his secular life or to
his carnal nature. – see John 21:15-17). (p. 37)
You see this back and forth usages of Simeon or Peter. It is according to what behavior Peter was exhibiting. It is interesting that Jesus gave him a new name, it seems mainly to define him as what he wanted him to become, stable and solid. Yet when he would express behaviors of wavering and bullheadedness of the old Simeon he would call him Simeon.
John 21:15-19 So when they had eaten breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, "Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me more than these?" He said to Him, "Yes, Lord; You know that I love You." He said to him, "Feed My lambs." (16) He said to him again a second time, "Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me?" He said to Him, "Yes, Lord; You know that I love You." He said to him, "Tend My sheep." (17) He said to him the third time, "Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me?" Peter was grieved because He said to him the third time, "Do you love Me?" And he said to Him, "Lord, You know all things; You know that I love You." Jesus said to him, "Feed My sheep. (18) "Most assuredly, I say to you, when you were younger, you girded yourself and walked where you wished; but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will gird you and carry you where you do not wish." (19) This He spoke, signifying by what death he would glorify God. And when He had spoken this, He said to him, "Follow Me."
It is a common problem that we wrestle with the spiritual and the carnal.
Rom 7:15 For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do. 16 If, then, I do what I will not to do, I agree with the law that it is good. 17 But now, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me. 18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find. 19 For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice.