“A little later someone else saw him and said, ‘You also are one of them.’ ‘Man, I am not!’ Peter replied” (Luke 22:58).
Peter is the best known of all the disciples. We are drawn to him because of his humanness. He was like us. He made mistakes. He tried hard, but often failed. In spite of his failing, we can learn from him.
Peter’s greatest asset was his love for Christ. When Christ called him, he immediately left his nets and followed. When Jesus asked the question, “Who do you say I am?” the crowd guessed wildly, but Peter said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
When Christ spoke of many denying Him in the days ahead, Peter said he would never deny Him. In spite of his protest, Christ told Peter he would deny Him three times. This prophecy was fulfilled when Christ was put on trial. Peter watched in a crowd of on-lookers. Three times they asked if he was a follower of Christ, and three times Peter said, “No.”
Like Peter, many of us have denied Christ and fallen. However, we need to follow Peter’s example—he did not let his fall become his finish. When he realized what he had done, he fled to a lonely spot where he repented of his denial and God forgave him.
He continued his ministry for Christ. His fall was not his finish. He lived many long and fruitful years after his fall. During his continuing ministry, he worked miracles, healed the sick, preached the Gospel to thousands, and helped start many first-century churches.
Herein is a great lesson for us: We should never let our fall be our finish. God can, and will, use us yet.
©2013 Robert G. Wilkerson
Dr. Robert Wilkerson is a minister, writer, and founder of People For the Christian Way, an advocacy organization whose mission is to encourage all people to practice Christian principles in business, politics, and every area of life. firstname.lastname@example.org, http://www.people-for-the-christian-way.org