Summary: This sermon explores the life, calling, and failures of Simon Peter. The Lord doesn't throw the clay away, he just remolds it.


Matthew 26:69-75

Intro: It seems there was this wild duck, who with his mates was flying in the springtime northward across Europe. During the flight he came down in a Danish barnyard where there were tame ducks. He enjoyed some of their corn. He stayed for an hour, then for a day, then for a week, then for a month, and finally, because he relished the good fare and the safety of the barnyard, he stayed all summer. But one autumn day when the flock of wild ducks were winging their way southward again, they passed over the barnyard, and their mate heard their cries. He was stirred with a strange thrill of joy and delight, and with a great flapping of wings he rose in the air to join his old comrades in their flight.

But he found that his good fare had made him so soft and heavy that he could rise no higher than the eaves of the barn. So he dropped back again to the barnyard, and said to himself, "Oh well, my life is safe here and the food is good." Every spring and autumn when he heard the wild ducks honking, his eyes would gleam for a moment and he would begin to flap his wings. But finally the day came when the wild ducks flew over him and uttered their cry, but he paid not the slightest attention to them. What a parable that is of how the soul can forget its high ideals and standards and be content with lower things!

Now, that is just a story. But, is it your story? Was there a time when you soared higher with the Lord than you are soaring now? We all go through periods when we play the Prodigal, wandering from the Father's House, but if you are genuinely saved, you will never be satisfied to waddle around on the ground when you were created to fly high above the world.

In our text, we are presented with a man who puts the story of the complacent duck into human shoe leather. This man's name is Simon Peter. Our text finds him in the wrong place, doing the wrong things with the wrong people. How did he wind up here? Well, let me just say that it did not happen in an instant! Backsliding, and that's what we see in the life of Peter, is a process that develops over time. First one area, then another begins to slip in a life and then before a person knows what has happened, they are no longer soaring high above the world, but they find themselves surrounded by people who do not know how to fly and do not care to find out.

Some, in this room, are just like Simon Peter. You have allowed your heart to grow cold. Your love for Jesus doesn't burn as brightly as it once did. The things of God aren't as glorious as they used to be. Maybe you wonder how it all happened and if there is any hope for your restoration. Well, from this passage, we can see how Peter wound up on the bottom and how he got back up again. Let's follow the events that lead to Peter's fall and restoration as we consider the thought To The Bottom And Back.


A.) Peter's Conversion Luke 5:8; John 1:41-42 - He had experienced a personal encounter with the Lord Jesus Christ! That is what salvation is - 1 John 5:12; Acts 16:31 - a personal meeting with Jesus!

B.) Peter's Confession Matt. 16:16 - He was settled on Who Jesus was. “thou art the Christ” He knew, beyond all doubts, that Jesus was everything He claimed to be. This too is absolutely essential for salvation. John 8:24 “…if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.”

C.) Peter's Conclusion

John 6:68 “…to whom shall we go?, thou hast the words of life.” In this passage, Peter took all he knew about Jesus and said that Jesus alone was the Way to God, the Truth from God and the Life of God. Peter knew that everything began and ended in the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ.

D.) Peter's Consecration Matt. 10:2, Peter is numbered, blessed and used among the 12 Apostles. He is in a place of honor! He is in a place of power! He is a dedicated soldier. He even tried to defend the life of Jesus in the garden, John 18:10, he cut the High Priest servants off with a sword. This man is no slouch!

Peter is born again! His name is written in Heaven! He is a child of God! Yet, he still winds up in the wrong place, doing the wrong things with the wrong people! The lesson is this: Don't think your spiritual walk ends with your being saved!

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