Summary: Peter denies Christ, experiences a great failure, but it is not the end of the story....we serve a God of 2nd Chances!

Passion and Failure – 2nd Chances!

Pastor Glenn Newton, March 29th, 2015

Mark 14:27-31; 66-72

Jesus Predicts Peter’s Denial

27 “You will all fall away,” Jesus told them, “for it is written:

“‘I will strike the shepherd,

and the sheep will be scattered.’[a]

28 But after I have risen, I will go ahead of you into Galilee.”

29 Peter declared, “Even if all fall away, I will not.”

30 “Truly I tell you,” Jesus answered, “today—yes, tonight—before the rooster crows twice[b] you yourself will disown me three times.”

31 But Peter insisted emphatically, “Even if I have to die with you, I will never disown you.” And all the others said the same.

Let me read to you what happens later that same day….Jesus has been arrested and now is being falsely accused…Peter is following at a distance.

Peter Disowns Jesus

66 While Peter was below in the courtyard, one of the servant girls of the high priest came by. 67 When she saw Peter warming himself, she looked closely at him.

“You also were with that Nazarene, Jesus,” she said.

68 But he denied it. “I don’t know or understand what you’re talking about,” he said, and went out into the entryway.[a]

69 When the servant girl saw him there, she said again to those standing around, “This fellow is one of them.” 70 Again he denied it.

After a little while, those standing near said to Peter, “Surely you are one of them, for you are a Galilean.”

71 He began to call down curses, and he swore to them, “I don’t know this man you’re talking about.”

72 Immediately the rooster crowed the second time.[b] Then Peter remembered the word Jesus had spoken to him: “Before the rooster crows twice[c] you will disown me three times.” And he broke down and wept.

1. Passion is a good thing, but it’s not enough!

29 Peter declared, “Even if all fall away, I will not.”

Peter was the spokesperson for the 12 disciples, he was a leader by nature…he no doubt was passionate about Jesus and was willing to die for Jesus if need be. Peter’s heart was in the right place, but as we will see in our passage this morning, something was still missing.

How many times have you uttered those famous words…. “I will never…” or “You’ll never see me ….” We are pretty good at making some passionate proclamations…and when we make those, we believe it with all our hearts. Life has a way of testing those statements…doesn’t it?

Passion is a good thing, but it’s not enough. In the Christian life, when we get saved, we are passionate about God and what He has done for us through Jesus, forgiving us of all our sins…setting us free! And God wants to use that Passion to tell others about Him…but we have someone we need to learn to count on that the disciples didn’t have yet when they faced this time of crisis…we have the Holy Spirit.

I’ve thought a lot about this passage and this failure that we see on Peter’s part, and all the other disciples who ran and hid away instead of fighting for Jesus’ sake. I don’t think they were weak men physically, I don’t think they were passive in their love for Jesus….what I do think is that God was allowing them to go through this failure to teach them that even with all the Passion they could muster up….they still needed someone to give them what would be needed in their times of persecution and in living out their Christian life the way Jesus was modeling….they needed a source of strength….they needed an encourager, an accountability partner….they would need the Power of the Holy Spirit.

If you have played sports at all, you understand about the butterflies that happen before the game is about to start. In High School, before the football games, we had this whole pregame routine that we went through leading up to the game…we ate at a certain time….we started getting taped at a certain time, we started getting our pads on at a certain time….then about 45 minutes before it was time to go out and take the field we would listen to a certain song… Phil Collins… “In the Air Tonight”…by the time that song was over we were ready….as we walked to the field as one, the adrenaline rush was pretty awesome….we were ready to do battle.

Funny thing about all that passion though…after the first 10 minutes of the game…when you begin to feel the physical strain of the game…it wasn’t passion anymore that mattered the most, it was just football…who was the better team.

Even in sports, passion will only take you so far.

Have you, like this great apostle…Peter…have you failed God in your relationship to Him? Have you fell into the grips of temptation, and turned away from what you knew was the right thing to do?

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