Summary: There was no one who was more outspoken for his Master than Peter. He was the one whom everyone could count on to stand for Jesus and define his faith in the one from Nazareth. After all, Peter was the "Rock." He was up front, a get in your face type.
The last days of our Lord, in His human form, were rapidly coming to a close. For three years plus, the disciples had lived with the Master and together they had seen and experienced much. They rode a roller coaster with their hopes and dreams, regardless of how many times Christ tried to get them to see that He was not going to be the earthly Messiah whom they desired. They held out hope against hope that maybe, just maybe, He would relent and they would be able to see Him become the Savior of Israel. What they failed to realize was that He was the Savior of not only Israel, but of the whole world. However, their myopic vision would not allow them to fully grasp what was at stake.
Before the Romans came to fulfill the Scriptures, Jesus was giving the final words of encouragement and instructions to His followers when Peter spoke and said that he would never deny Jesus. However, the Master knew differently and told Peter that he would deny Him. This was hard for this impetuous man to accept and he clung to his statement that regardless of what happened, he was going to stick with Jesus. Then, when Jesus was finally arrested in the Garden and hauled away, things began to turn negatively towards the hope of the inevitable truth that Jesus was not going to do what they had been hoping He would do.
Once the arrest was made, things spiraled out of all control and the followers of Christ stood helpless as some of them fled. Then Peter did what he thought he would never do-deny Jesus. The results of this action burst upon Peter like a dam that had just found its weakest point in the retaining wall and burst through to flood all unclaimed territory below the water level. Peter was engulfed in a flood of remorseful emotions and he wept bitterly. One could never fault Peter for his intentions, but the reality of events proved to him that regardless of his Inspiring Intentions, he Incurred complete Ineffectiveness before his Lord.
I see three things in these verses as they relate to what Peter experienced on that lonely morning so long ago. The first thing I see is that his efforts, his vows, his intents were all INIMICAL to what he actually did. I then notice the IMPEDIMENTS of his personality and his person as he failed in the one hour when Jesus needed a friend. Lastly, I note that these motives and actions were INDICATIVE to this fisherman whom everyone loved. As I look at Peter in the light of my sermon, I cannot but help notice that maybe, just maybe, I might be entwined with Peter’s psyche in my walk with the Lord. Where he failed-I can fail and I often have. What bothered him sometimes bothers me and the implications of what these events meant for Peter mean the same for me. The good news is that Peter was restored and so can I be restored by the same loving Lord of both Peter and myself, regardless of the many failures we commit in following Jesus.