Read His Words Before Ours!
The Sanhedrin thought they had me cornered. But this time would be different. I would set the record straight and tell of the Truth. (John 14:6)
My life has always been wrapped up in catching fish. I love it! Night after night, my brother, Andrew, and I would boat out to sea. We would cast our nets into the water, waiting for that ONE BIG CATCH.
I remember one night in particular, which should have been a great night for fishing, but as much as we tried, there was not a single fish to be caught. As the sun began to rise, we pulled to shore. Along the shore, crowds of people were coming closer. Nearby, Jesus told us to return the boat to sea. I was exhausted from fishing all night. But being Jesus’ disciple, I pushed the boat back out and hopped inside!
After teaching the people gathered on the shore for a bit, Jesus turned to us and told us to cast our nets on the other side of the boat. Of course, I had to reply, rather insistently, “Uh, Jesus, we have been out all night. We didn’t catch one single fish, and we are too tired to try again!” He just looked at us and said, “Throw out your nets!” So we did. And guess what? We pulled in so many fish there were too many to hold!
Jesus said, “Peter, today you will catch fish in your nets, but one day you will catch people for Me!” My mouth dropped open. I didn’t understand what He meant, but looking back, I see so clearly. (Luke 5:10-11, paraphrased)
See, I was an ordinary man, like you. Doubt came easy. Fear, even easier. Passion drove me. Let me explain. One night, the winds were fierce and the waters were overtaking the boat. I, with the others, noticed something out on the water. What is that? A ghost? But suddenly, I knew Who it was! “Jesus, My Lord, if it is you, bid me to come.”
As I stepped onto the treacherous waters, “Come” was the only word I heard. I kept my eyes focused on Him, until I was slipping onto the water. How is this possible? For one brief second, I was walking on water.
The next second, the wind howled and tore against me, the roar of the waves was deafening, and I took my eyes from Jesus . . . “Uh, Jesus help me!” Instantly beside me, Jesus lifted me out of the water and we climbed into the boat. The others began worshipping, “Truly You are the Son of God!” The other disciples knew Who He was. But, did I? (Matthew 14:28-33)
“Come, follow Me” were the first words I heard Jesus speak to me. And, on that very day, I became His disciple. Each day, talking and walking with Jesus, I was developing a relationship like no other! I was quickly learning He was exactly Who He claimed! Day after day, I watched as He healed, loved, and shared with others about His Father.
One day, He asked the other disciples, “Who are others saying I am?”.
Without hesitation, everyone began speaking.
“John the Baptist.”
“But Who do you say I am?” He asked with quiet insistence.
I didn’t hold back for a minute. “Oh, Jesus, You are the Messiah.”
“Aren’t you a disciple of the One they call the Messiah?”
I quickly hid beneath my cloak. “You must have mistaken me for someone else.”
Three times, I was asked. And three times, I denied My Lord.
I, who once walked on water, heard teachings to the multitudes, witnessed countless miracles, healings, and the-never-ending-catches-of-fish, I could not even speak His name.
I was one of three disciples to pray with Him in the garden. How could I have done this? Deny the Messiah?
So, I understood the confusion of my inquisitors at this moment. Upon acknowledging their accusations, I saw the elders, rulers, and scribes converse. They seemed to be bewildered as I faced them with the Spirit’s courage and spoke of the very One I denied so many years ago.
“You ask me, by what power? In what name? Until my last breath, I will proclaim Jesus as the One True God. With boldness, I say this man was healed by Jesus, and in His Name.” (Acts 4:7)
One of the Sanhedrin turned to face me. “Um, Peter, well, we do not understand how an uneducated man could say these things to us. We’re going to let you go, but we order you not to speak in His Name again.”
Me? Not speak in Jesus’ Name?
I, who after years spent by His side, knew Jesus as both a man and as my Savior, my Lord?
I, who quickly learned I was loved and forgiven by the One Who carried my sins to the cross?
I, who was called and chosen by The Messiah to carry the Good News across the nations? (Luke 9:20)
I should remain silent? Impossible.
I knew Who He was because I had been truly touched by Jesus! I will remain immovable and unshakeable, just like the name Jesus gave me, the rock upon whom He would build His church. (Matthew 16:18)
But, my sweet friends, how would you answer this question? If I, Peter, a disciple and follower of the Messiah, who also had a deep relationship with Jesus, could truthfully answer this question, can you? Without hesitation, who do you say He is?
Embracing God’s fullness in our lives is rooted in scripture and memorizing His word is vital to our continued growth and depth with Jesus. Tap and hold from your mobile device to download this week’s verse and make it your phone’s lockscreen!