Enter Peter. He’s the one who walked on the water with Jesus, who said that Jesus was the Son of the Living God, who was so certain that he would never fail Jesus. Would it have made a difference if Peter had heeded the warnings Jesus had given him? You decide?
Warning number 1: “Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat (Luke 22:31).” Peter responded by stating that he was ready to go with Jesus to prison or death (verse 33).
Warning number 2: When they were all at the Mount of Olives, Jesus tells his disciples that they will be offended by him and will scatter. Peter objects and says that he will not be offended by him. Jesus responds by telling him, “…before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice (Mark 14:30).”
Warning number 3: Jesus took Peter, James and John to the garden to pray and keep watch. Jesus finds them sleeping and says to Peter, “Simon, sleepest thou? couldest not thou watch one hour? Watch ye and pray, lest ye enter into temptation (Mark 14:37,38).”
There it is. Three warnings. A disciple, a man of faith who didn’t heed the warnings. Was he devastated when he heard the cock crow the second time? Yes, but Jesus also said something else to him. It’s in Luke 22:32. “But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.”
A story of faith and failure. It’s not the end of Peter’s story. He goes on to serve his Lord, Jesus. First Peter 5:8 is Peter’s warning, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.” A timely lesson for all of us.