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I Will Not Deny You

April 10, 2016

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I Will Not  Deny You

When we’re afraid,  we might instinctively go  into a state  of denial.     We just don’t want  to face  the scary problem.     It’s so much easier  to walk away  from the situation  and pretend  it does not exist.     We don’t like  running away  from our problems,  but feel fearfully helpless  and don’t know what  to do.

Peter felt  the same way.     When with Jesus  and the other disciples  in the upper room,  he could strongly  and bravely state,  “Even if  I must die  with You,  I will not deny You.     (Matthew 26:35)     There is strength  in numbers  and the kind  of fellowship we’re in.     But,  after Jesus  was arrested  by a mob  and was being spit upon  and beaten,  it was easy  for Peter  to see  he was out numbered  in bad company.     Peter had followed  the angry crowd  that had arrested Jesus  and had courageously gotten  into the courtyard  to find out  what was happening,  but he was not  amongst friends.     So,  when the obnoxious crowd  identified him  as a friend  of Jesus,  Peter feared  for his well-being.     In Matthew 26:69-75  it says,

Now Peter  was sitting outside  in the courtyard,  and a certain servant girl  came to him  and said,  “You too  were with Jesus  the Galilean.”

But  he denied it  before them all,  saying,  “I do not know  what you are talking about.”

And when he had gone out  to the gateway,  another servant girl  saw him  and said  to those  who were there,  “This man was  with Jesus  of Nazareth.”

And again he denied it  with an oath,  “I do not know  the man.”

And a little later  the bystanders came up  and said  to Peter,  “Surely  you too are one  of them;  for the way  you talk gives you away.”

Then he began  to curse  and swear,  “I do not know  the man!”     And immediately  a cock crowed.     And Peter remembered  the word  which Jesus  had said,  “Before a cock crows,  you will deny Me  three times.”     And he went out  and wept bitterly.

And so,  every Christian  who has denied Christ  in fear  weeps bitterly.     But,  Peter  did not weep  for himself.     He wept  because he really knew Jesus  was the Christ,  the Son  of God.     No one should ever deny  the Savior,  but he had.     What remorse!     He had denied truth itself.     Peter was sorry  that he had hurt Jesus.

About this same incident,  Luke 22:31-34  records Jesus saying,

“Simon,  Simon,  behold,  Satan  has demanded permission  to sift you  like wheat;  but I have prayed  for you,  that your faith  may not fail,  and you,  when once you have turned again,  strengthen  your brothers.”

And he said  to Him,  “Lord,  with You  I am ready  to go both  to prison  and to death!”

And He said,  “I tell you,  Peter,  the cock  will not crow today  until you have denied three times  that you know Me.”

Yes,  Peter denied knowing Jesus three times.     But,  with a repentant heart  that knew he was forgiven,  and Peter did spend  the rest  of his life strengthening fellow Christians  in the truth.     He became  a leader  in preaching the gospel  of forgiveness  and salvation.     Peter’s preaching finally led  to his death,  where he was crucified  upside down.     But then  he was no longer afraid  because he knew the truth  was worth standing up for.

When we give  our hearts  to Jesus,  He prays  for us also.     Jesus prays  that our faith  will not fail  and that when  we turn back  to Him  in repentance,  we will be  all the stronger  in our faith  and service  —  like Peter.

Since we sin  every day,  we need  to turn back  to Jesus  every day  in repentance.     Then,  accept  His loving forgiveness  and become stronger  in the true faith,  for Jesus’ sake.     Jesus’ love  for us  has been so faithful  and true.     We can trust Him  to continue strengthening  and leading us  as we abide  in His word.     It is  in His word  that we receive strength  and knowledge  of the truth  that sustains us.

Then,  with Peter  and all the saints  down through the ages,  we say,  “Hallelujah!     Let those also  who suffer  according to the will  of God  entrust their souls  to a faithful Creator  in doing what is right.”     (1 Peter 4:19).

Love,
Margaret

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A Christian devotional  to glorify  the LORD of lords  and GOD of gods.

Pray for our country.

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Handel’s Hallelujah Chorus

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The LORD  made this day, let us rejoice  and be glad  in Him.

Psalm 118:24

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The word of the LORD is tried;

He is a shield  to all  who take refuge  in Him.

Psalm 18:30

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Sing for joy  in the LORD,  O you righteous ones;

Praise is becoming  to the upright.

Psalm 33:1

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How blessed are those  who dwell  in Thy house!

They are ever praising Thee.

Psalm 84:4

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Just as a father  has compassion  on his children,

So the LORD  has compassion  on those who fear Him.

Psalm 103:13

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O give thanks  to the LORD,  for He is good;

For His lovingkindness  is everlasting.

Psalm 107:1

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Glory in His holy name;

Let the heart  of those who seek the LORD  be glad.

Psalm 105:3

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Not that I have already obtained it,  or have already  become perfect, but I press on  in order that  I may  lay hold  of that for which also  I was laid hold of  by Christ Jesus.

Philippians 3:12

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