Summary: A study in contrasts and comparisons between Peter and Judas, and how they responded to Christ.
Peter and Judas
September 27, 2009
NOTE: THE ME/WE/GOD/YOU/WE FORMAT IS FROM ANDY STANLEY’S BOOK, "COMMUNICATING FOR A CHANGE."
Me: I hope you don’t mind if the sermon’s a little shorter today.
My original intent a couple weeks ago was to combine today’s passage with the section just after it, but as I was working through it, I realized there was stuff in here that I didn’t think would wise for us to skip.
It’s important, but it won’t take me as long to share it with you as some things do, okay?
I’d like to start my time here today by sharing one of my less-than-stellar moments growing up.
I was in high school, either a junior or senior, I can’t remember which.
My dad and step-mom were out of town, leaving my older step-brothers and me to have the house to ourselves.
As was our custom, we partied. Lots of people, lots of alcohol, and even some pot.
While I was drunk one of those evenings, I stole a couple traffic signs – a stop sign and a yield sign.
I threw them in the trunk of the car the folks had left and basically forgot all about them.
A few days later I came home from some activity and saw the signs next to the front door of the house, and my heart sank.
There was no way my dad didn’t know I had those signs, although there was a chance he didn’t know how I got them.
I found out in a hurry that he did know.
I went downstairs to where my dad was working on a gun. He was a gunsmith in his free time.
I can’t remember all the conversation, but I remember that he told me some men stopped by his office that day and told him they thought I had stolen those signs.
Since Dad didn’t know anything about them, he denied I had them. But since then he had found them in the trunk.
I knew there was no way around it, so I told him that I had taken them, that I was drunk (telling him THAT wasn’t easy, either), and that I was sorry.
His response was that I would have to return the signs, of course, and that my name would go on federal report.
He grounded me for a week, which now that I think about it was an awful light punishment.
Well, I gotta tell you. Going on federal report didn’t bother me a whole lot. Being grounded didn’t bother me much, either.
What hurt was knowing that my dad was going to have to call these guys the next day and tell them I had the signs after all.
I had shamed my dad. That hurt. My dad didn’t deserve that from his oldest son.
We: I mentioned last week that all of us have failures, and some of us have some real beauties.
Someone once said, “I have many regrets, and I’m sure everyone does. The stupid things you do, you regret if you have any sense, and if you don’t regret them, maybe you’re stupid.” (1001 Quotations that Connect, Zondervan)
But how we respond to those failures can make all the difference in whether we can move on and still have a meaningful, significant, and purposeful life.
The shame and sorrow of past failures can either drive us away from God or to Him, and that’s a huge difference.
Judas and Peter serve as great examples of that. And in our time together, I hope that if there is something that might be holding you back, you’ll be encouraged today to come to Christ and let Him heal your heart.
God: We return to the gospel according to Matthew, after a 2-week break.
Today we’re going to look at the difference between how Peter responded after denying Christ and Judas after he betrayed Christ.
A few weeks ago we looked at how Peter reacted after talking big about how he would stand with Jesus no matter what, then running after He was arrested and denying he even knew Jesus just a little while later.
In today’s passage, we see how Judas responds to his realization that he had sinned against Jesus.
Matthew 27:1-10 (p. 704-705) –
1 Early in the morning, all the chief priests and the elders of the people came to the decision to put Jesus to death. 2 They bound him, led him away and handed him over to Pilate, the governor.
Jesus had already had been on trial throughout the night and these guys had already decided that He was worthy of death.
But to stay within their law, they couldn’t come to a formal decision until daybreak.
But remember, the Jews couldn’t actually carry out a death sentence, so they needed the Roman governor to convict Him of a crime against Rome that carried the death penalty.