Everyone stumbles now and then; nevertheless, Peter thought he never would. "Peter said to him, ‘Even if all are made to stumble, yet I will not be’" (Mark 14:29 NKJV). On the night Jesus instituted the Lord’s Supper, Jesus predicted that all the disciples would be made to stumble because of their lack of faith in him. Peter, in his overzealous confidence, denied it could happen. Peter was so sure of himself he proclaimed emphatically that if he had to die with Christ he would not deny him (Read Mark 14:27-31).
But we know Peter did … three times (John 18)! God, in his omniscience, had zeroed in on a weakness in Peter’s character. Jesus allowed Satan to sift Peter through humbling circumstances, pruning the pride that would prevent him from becoming the leader that God intended him to be in the early church. Along with Jesus’ prediction of Peter’s denial was that of his restoration. After his repentance, Peter was to be used to bring the other disciples into a restored relationship with the Lord (Luke 22:31-32) so they might not stumble anymore either.
Is there an area in your life in which you’ve grown self-sufficient, overly confident, or adamant about assuming that you couldn’t fall into temptation? Often, we can identify these areas by the lack of time we spend in prayer over them.
If the Holy Spirit brings something to mind, ask the Father to prune that tendency from your heart.That way, you may help someone else to not stumble either. We all need to help each other live godly lives.
Father, help us guard against pride that causes us to act independently from the power of the Holy Spirit. Help us to always walk in a spirit of humility aware of our great need of you. In Christ’s name, amen.
Go Deeper — Reading what happened to Peter, does it convict you, worry you, or bring you comfort? Think about why and discuss that with God in your quiet prayer time today. Who do you know who could learn from Peter as well?
Photo Credit: Ümit Bulut