Summary: The third message in a series of seven on brokenness. This message is on Peter.

What God can do with a Broken Man?

To become truly a man of God you have to reach a breaking point and then choose to be broken.

Some men choose to harden.

Men like the Pharoah of Egypt who would not let Moses lead the people to the promised land. Men like Judas Iscariot who betrayed the savior into the hands of his enemies. Men like King Agrippa who “almost” became a believer.

Others choose to be broken. Men like King David.

Men like Saul the persecutor of Christians who became Paul the Apostle of Jesus. Men like John Mark who went home from his first missions trip in disgrace and who later became valuable to Paul. Men like Peter who denied Jesus and later preached the first sermon declaring the good news about his death, burial, and resurrection.

Being Broken is necessary and eventually even good.

Brokenness changes you permanently. And when God heals you – you become a better person than you ever were before.

Where there was hardness – there is now tenderness.

Where there was icy ferocity – there is now a quiet gentleness. Where there was arrogant cold fury – there is now a warmth and acceptance of all.

Watchman Nee

“Our spirit is released according to the degree of our brokenness. The one who has accepted the most discipline is the one who can best serve. The more one is broken, the more sensitive he is.”

Peter was a man who came to his breaking point the night Jesus was arrested. But while the breaking was sudden and painful the hardening was not. The process of hardening against God is a gradual one, often overtaking a person by stealth.

We shall carefully examine the process that led to Peter’s denial of Christ and how before the night was over Peter was broken….

Peter was proud.

Mk 14

27 "You will all fall away," Jesus told them, "for it is written: "’I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered.’

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."

Peter had always been quick to rely on himself. He is the first to understand and confess that Jesus was the Son of God. He was the first to walk on the water. He boasted that he would not fall away or deny Christ!

Peter was careless.

Mk 14

32 They went to a place called Gethsemane, and Jesus said to his disciples, "Sit here while I pray."

33 He took Peter, James and John along with him, and he began to be deeply distressed and troubled.

34 "My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death," he said to them. "Stay here and keep watch."

35 Going a little farther, he fell to the ground and prayed that if possible the hour might pass from him.

36 <"Abba>, Father," he said, "everything is possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will."

37 Then he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping. "Simon," he said to Peter, "are you asleep? Could you not keep watch for one hour?

Told to keep watch, Peter kept falling asleep. When they came to arrest Jesus he lopped off an ear of one of the accusers. When asked to pray he fell asleep.

More often than not, it is a "gradual drifting" that catches us off guard. It is not the lions that eat us up – it is the mosquitoes.

Peter was ashamed and afraid

Mk 14

53 They took Jesus to the high priest, and all the chief priests, elders and teachers of the law came together.

54 Peter followed him at a distance, right into the courtyard of the high priest. There he sat with the guards and warmed himself at the fire.

Note that it says "...Peter followed Him at a distance"

Now that Jesus had become unpopular.. Peter stays far enough away so as not to be identified with Him.

When we are ashamed of Christ, it is natural for to fall into the next step of Hardness against God...

Peter took comfort in the wrong things with the wrong people

Mk 14:54

54 Peter followed him at a distance, right into the courtyard of the high priest. There he sat with the guards and warmed himself at the fire.

We now find Peter sitting with the servants of the High Priest and warming himself by the fire. Ashamed to be seen with Christ, it becomes easy to mingle with those of the world and enjoy their comforts.

But one cannot be "comforted by the fire" of the world, and not be "burned"! Close contact with that which can harm has its effects! -

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