“For though the righteous fall seven times, they rise again…” (Proverbs 24:16).
Grace and peace be unto you.
Word of Encouragement…
Peter’s mind was in turmoil and his heart shattered into pieces. His master who raised the dead, healed the sick, baffled the Pharisees and Sadducees with His wisdom, slipped through the crowd when his enemies wanted to kill him (John 11:38-44; Matthew 8:3; Luke 2:47; John 10:39), was seized by soldiers and led away. As he sat and tried to process his thoughts and emotions, three people approached him and suggested that he was a disciple of Christ. He vehemently denied all three accusations. Then, it dawned on him that he refused to associate with Christ. He repented and wept bitterly (Luke 22:54-62).
Peter did not plan to deny Jesus, he was tempted at a vulnerable point in his life and yielded. We are oftentimes tempted when we are physically, psychologically, or spiritually weak because our defenses are down, and we are more likely to cave under pressure. Nonetheless, the Bible says, although we struggle to choose between the evil and good desires that are within us, we can be victorious through the power of Jesus Christ (Romans 7:19-25).
Jesus heard Peter’s prayer of repentance and forgave him. After His resurrection, He told the three women who visited his tomb, “But go, tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you” (Mark 16:7). Peter’s slate was wiped clean and Jesus was focused on helping him to accomplish his divine purpose. He received the message and joyfully went to Galilee and met with Jesus.
Similarly, when we sin and repent, Jesus forgives us (1 John 1:9) and is ready to guide us towards the fulfillment of our purpose. He is not pleased when we live in a state of guilt and condemnation. Hence, He encourages us to repent, accept His forgiveness, restore our relationship with Him, and focus on accomplishing our purpose (Philippians 3:14).
The apostle Peter fell, but did not stay down. Today, he is known as the leader of the twelve disciples and one of the Popes of the Roman Catholic Church. If you have fallen, do not stay down, get up by the power of Jesus, and keep going.