Summary: As Christians we are called to live our lives with an absolute love for Jesus
February 13, 2005
As Valentine’s Day approaches I just want to make one thing clear - I love my wife
• There are times when I don’t enjoy being with her - but I love her
• There are times when I don’t want to talk to her - but I love her
• There are times when I go for days without talking to her - but I love her
• The times that I do talk with her are only when I want something from her, want to ask about something specific or when I feel guilty - but I love her
• There are times when she is not a part of my everyday life I just put on a good show on Sunday morning - but I love her
• There are times I get together with other people and tell them how much I love my wife but I never tell her - but I love her
• There are times when she tries to talk with me but I just ignore her most of the time - but I love her
• There are times when I just don’t have much to do with her - but I love her
After listening to what I just said, how many of you would say I love my wife?
The truth is that I do not treat Elizabeth this way, at least not always. The truth is also that if we are honest with ourselves this is the way we treat Jesus a great deal of the time.
Could people be able to tell that you love Jesus by the way you live your life? Can people see a life that is filled with loving Jesus?
C.S. Lewis nails the true nature of the issue of loving Jesus when he said: On the whole, Christ’s love for us is a much safer subject to think about than our love for Him.
This morning, I want to closely examine a subject that might not be the easiest to approach but one that I think is vital for us. Do you really love Jesus?
15 When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, "Simon son of John, do you truly love me more than these?" "Yes, Lord," he said, "you know that I love you." Jesus said, "Feed my lambs." 16 Again Jesus said, "Simon son of John, do you truly love me?" He answered, "Yes, Lord, you know that I love you." Jesus said, "Take care of my sheep." 17 The third time he said to him, "Simon son of John, do you love me?" Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, "Do you love me?" He said, "Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you." Jesus said, "Feed my sheep.
Basic Background for the scene
Peter had failed Jesus miserably. Peter literally cursed the name of Jesus to try to save his own neck. He denied that he even knew who Jesus was. Peter had failed after he boasted about how much he would sacrifice for Jesus. The point is Peter had failed. Jesus shows us something vital to our walk with Him here; failure is never final. There was still much that peter was going to accomplish for Christ and he needed to realize that fact.
You can relate to where Peter is at this moment because you have been there too.
• The time when you failed to keep your mouth shut and said something you shouldn’t
• The time when the sin you wish you could take back comes back to haunt you
• The time when you promised Jesus things would be different only to go right back to living that old life
• The time when you knew you were supposed to obey that still small voice but chose not to
You can relate to Peter because whether you want to admit it or not you have failed just as badly and more often than he did. You can relate to Peter because you’ve had the same feelings of going back to the old life because it was comfortable. You can relate because you have felt like your days of doing something great for God were done. Anyone ever felt that way?
Jesus brings Peter back on track
Jesus does something before He ever speaks to Peter on the shore. Jesus gives Him a vivid reminder of where he had been and where he needed to go. Earlier in chapter 21 there is a miraculous catch of fish. This is not an accident but rather an intentional reminder to Peter. In Luke, the day Peter decides to follow Jesus there is a miraculous catch of fish. Jesus is reminding Peter of the calling that he was given.