Summary: A look at what the resurrection means in the life of the disciple Peter who is asking the question each of wonders at one time or another: Will it be enough to transform my life? Can there be forgiveness for one such as me?
Will It Be Enough? - John 21:15-19 - April 8, 2012
Series: Resurrection Sunday (Easter 2012)
For Martin and Gracia Burnham, missionaries in the Philippines, it should have been one of the most wonderful moments of their lives. It was, in fact, their 18th wedding anniversary and they were celebrating it by getting away to an island resort. At first it was everything they had hoped it would be, but the joy turned to terror when Abu Sayef guerrillas burst into their room one night. Although they had no way of knowing it at the time, they would spend the next year of their lives in captivity, trudging through the jungles at gunpoint, as the guerillas decided what to do with them.
Some months into their ordeal word came that Gracia’s family had collected a sizable amount of ransom money in order to purchase their release. The question on every one’s heart was this: Would it be enough? Would it be enough to satisfy the guerillas demands? Would it be enough to purchase their freedom? Would it be enough to give them a new lease on life?
Will it be enough? That’s a question that we ask at different times as well, isn’t it? Take your favorite sports team, they practice endlessly for the big game, when the moment comes, the question you’re asking is: Will it be enough to win the championship? … A general, committing his troops to the battlefield, wonders in his heart: Will it be enough to ensure victory? … A marriage in trouble, a couple seeking help, the question overwhelming them: Will it be enough to save their relationship? … And on and on it goes: Will it be enough? Is a question we have asked ourselves many times.
This morning I want to introduce you to a man who is asking that same question. His name is Peter and he was one of the first disciples that Jesus called to come and follow Him. And that's important to note this morning because it means that Peter was with Jesus from the beginning of Jesus’ ministry. That’s means he would have been there for many of the miracles that we read about in the pages of the Bible. He was what we would call an eye witness to lives being changed as Jesus ministered to those in need. Peter was there when the blind received their sight – he was there when they saw the world around them for the first time. He was there when the lame were healed and took their first steps, and when those with leprosy were restored he was there to see the gratitude on their faces. He was there when Jesus fed thousands from a few loaves of bread and a couple of fish and he was there when Jesus raised the dead to life. He saw all this and more with his own eyes because he was there!
Friends, you need to understand that this fisherman named Peter was a man of extremes. He lived life passionately. It was Peter who got out of the boat and walked on the water when Jesus called him to come to Him. It’s Peter who got all wet when he took his eyes off of Jesus and began to sink beneath the waves. It was Peter who, when Jesus began to speak of the necessity of His coming death and resurrection, took Jesus aside and tried to rebuke Him for saying such things. It’s Peter who refuses to let Jesus wash his feet that last night. It’s Peter who Jesus rebuked for such a refusal and it’s Peter who then cries out “not just my feet then but my whole body.” He truly is a man of extremes.
And it’s Peter who boldly proclaimed that he would lay down his life for Jesus. It’s Peter who drew his sword and attacked the servant of the High Priest the night Jesus was betrayed in the Garden of Gethsemane. And it’s Peter who told Jesus to his face that he would never deny Him no matter what may come.
And friends, it’s Peter who’s asking that question: Is it enough? Open your Bibles with me, please, to the Gospel of Luke - Luke, chapter 22, beginning in, verse 54. This is what we read there …
“Then seizing him, they led him away and took him into the house of the high priest. Peter followed at a distance. And when some there had kindled a fire in the middle of the courtyard and had sat down together, Peter sat down with them. A servant girl saw him seated there in the firelight. She looked closely at him and said, “This man was with him.” But he denied it. “Woman, I don’t know him,” he said. A little later someone else saw him and said, “You also are one of them.” “Man, I am not!” Peter replied. About an hour later another asserted, “Certainly this fellow was with him, for he is a Galilean.” Peter replied, “Man, I don’t know what you’re talking about!” Just as he was speaking, the rooster crowed. The Lord turned and looked straight at Peter. Then Peter remembered the word the Lord had spoken to him: “Before the rooster crows today, you will disown me three times.” And he went outside and wept bitterly.” (Luke 22:54–62, NIV)