Summary: Peter’s Denial (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email:

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Reading: Matthew chapter 26 verses 31 to 35 & 60 to 75.

Every one of us in life has faced the harsh reality of failure:

• Whether it’s your first step as a child,

• Your first attempt to ride a bike.

• Maybe it was an exam or interview;

• Maybe it was a job or a relationship.

• Or maybe something that you continually have problems with such as;

• Controlling your temper, sticking to a diet or maybe certain habits you wish to give up!

• Every one of us has faced FAILURE.

• Quote the novelist Joseph Conrad: “It’s only those who do nothing that make no mistakes”.

• Mistakes of course are part of life;

• And some of us seem to make more than others!


• One wit has written:

• “A dentist’s mistake is pulled out,

• A lawyer’s mistake is imprisoned.

• A teacher’s mistake is failed,

• A printer’s mistake is corrected.

• A pharmacist’s mistake is buried.

• A postman’s mistake is forwarded.

• An electrician’s mistake could be shocking!”

God can make something even out of our mistakes;

• Peter the apostle is a classic example of that!

• Of all the disciples, none stands as front and centre as Peter.

• Peter dominates every scene he's in.

• i.e. Have you noticed his name is always first whenever there is a lists of disciples?



A preacher was opening his mail one morning.

• Drawing a single sheet of paper from an envelope he found written on it only one word:

• "FOOL".

• The next Sunday he announced,

• "I have known many people who have written letters and forgot to sign their name.

• "But this week I received a letter from someone who signed his name

• And had forgotten to write a letter."

You can look at every situation in two ways:

• And you can of course look at the life of Peter in two ways;

• Impetuous failure or courageous follower.

• Peter was a man who was very strong willed, passionate, and expressive.

• He did nothing half-heartedly.

• When it came to fishing he was determined and sometimes obnoxious;

• When it came to friendships he was loyal to the core, blindly courageous,

• At certain times he was over confident, which caused him to overstate his commitment.

• But if necessary he was prepared to stand-alone!

• He may have made;

• Promises with his mouth that his body would be unable to keep.

• But Peter also demonstrated faith that none of the other disciples dared to do!

• Ill: Remember it was Peter & ONLY Peter who actually walked on the water!

Quote: C. S. Lewis, A Grief Observed:

• “You never know how much you really believe anything;

• Until its truth or falsehood becomes a matter of life and death.

• It is easy to say you believe a rope to be strong;

• As long as you are merely using it to cord a box.

• But suppose you had to hang by that rope over a precipice.

• Wouldn’t you then first discover how much you really trusted it?

• Peter was willing to put his faith into action;

• To put his belief into practice.

• Maybe that’s why Peter was not just one of the twelve:

• He was spokesman for the twelve; whether they liked it or not!


• A book I don’t think you can get at Keith Jones Bookshop is called

• “The Worst Case Scenario Survival Handbook.”

• And it’s just a manual, written in quite a factual tone,

• Based on interviews with experts in a variety of fields.

• It has reached number one best-selling status as a non-fiction paperback book.

• The back cover lists some of the books various sections.

• How to fend off a shark,

• How to take a punch,

• How to deliver a baby in a taxicab,

• How to survive a poisonous snake attack,

• How to jump from a moving car,

• How to identify a bomb,

• How to escape from Killer Bees,

• How to survive if your parachute fails to open and dozens of other dire situations.

• In fact there ones section called

• What should you do if confronted by an angry mountain lion?

The options are:

• 1, run;

• 2, play dead;

• 3, hold your coat open like a cape;

• 4, sing a gentle, happy song.

• OK, shall we have a show of hands, how thinks its 1, 2, 3, 4.

• The correct answer according to the “Worst Case Scenario Survival Handbook” is No 3;

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