Background Story: After celebrating the Passover with the disciples, Jesus went to pray in the Garden of Gethsemane. There Jesus was arrested by the temple guards. Peter and the disciples resisted the arrest but ultimately fled in fear. Now Jesus is being brought before the high priest for questioning.
Read Luke 22: 54-63
Then seizing him, they led him away and took him into the house of the high priest. Peter followed at a distance. 55 And when some there had kindled a fire in the middle of the courtyard and had sat down together, Peter sat down with them. 56 A servant girl saw him seated there in the firelight. She looked closely at him and said, “This man was with him.”
57 But he denied it. “Woman, I don’t know him,” he said.
58 A little later someone else saw him and said, “You also are one of them.”
“Man, I am not!” Peter replied.
59 About an hour later another asserted, “Certainly this fellow was with him, for he is a Galilean.”
60 Peter replied, “Man, I don’t know what you’re talking about!” Just as he was speaking, the rooster crowed. 61 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.” 62 And he went outside and wept bitterly.
63 The men who were guarding Jesus began mocking and beating him.
Big Idea: The cross of Christ is personal.
Personal. Imagine how deeply personal the cross of Christ was to Peter. After walking with Jesus for years listening to His words by the fire, seeing Him heal the sick, witnessing Him raise the dead, and sharing the Passover meal, Peter ran in fear and denied he every knew Him. At the moment of the denial before Jesus is led away to be mocked, beaten, and crucified, the Bible says, “The Lord turned and looked straight at Peter” (v 61). Wow…can you imagine the shame of that moment? It was as if Jesus looked at Peter and said, “this is for you.”
Before Jesus came, the forgiveness of sin came in a personal way through a burnt offering. In Leviticus 1: 3-4, the sinner would bring their best lamb without any defect or flaw and, “place their hand on the head of the burnt offering. Then the Lord will accept it in place of them. It will pay for their sin.” The sinner would look at the lamb, place their hands on it, transfer their sin to the lamb, and witness the sacrifice.
Now imagine Peter at the moment of his greatest weakness seeing Jesus pause and look at him. Their eyes meet and Peter, full of sin and shame, sees his lamb, “the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). In 1 Peter 1: 18-19, Peter spoke from personal experience when he wrote, “For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. “
Oh the great cost of our redemption! Just like Peter, our redemption is personal. Jesus died for you…your sin, your shame, your failures. Today praise Him for being your Lamb. Remember the Peter you used to be and thank Him for His amazing love that led Him to the cross!