Jesus & Peter ~ A Messsage for Us

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Jesus & Peter ~ A Messsage for Us

Post by Jarhead on Thu May 15 2014, 06:26

http://gracethrufaith.com/topical-studies/forgiveness/jesus-and-peter/

A lesson to remind each of us...



Jesus And Peter
Wednesday, May 14th, 2014


A Bible Study by Jack Kelley
As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.” At once they left their nets and followed him. (Matt 4:18-20)



According to John’s gospel Jesus and Peter first met after John the Baptist introduced Jesus to two of his disciples as “The Lamb of God, Who takes away the sin of the world.” (John 1:35).  Andrew, one of those disciples, immediately rushed to inform his brother Peter that he had seen the Messiah. Peter and Andrew were fishermen from Bethsaida, a fishing village (Bethsaida means “House of Fishing”) on the northeastern shore of the Sea of Galilee. Jesus of course was known as a carpenter’s son who grew up in Nazareth, a town about a day’s walk up into the steep hills that separated the Galilee from the plains of Megiddo to the west.

Take Me To Your Leader
Andrew brought Peter to meet Jesus and within a day or two Jesus had asked them to follow Him.  James and John, another pair of brothers who were also fishermen, were the next two disciples chosen and these four became the closest ones to Jesus, forming an inner circle of sorts. And of the 12, Peter became the group’s informal leader.
Peter’s small town naiveté and unabashed machismo teamed up to make him a take charge kind of guy, and Jesus seemed to take a special delight in him. Peter’s periodic bouts of “foot in mouth” disease must have given the Lord countless hours of laughter.
But it was his courage that most distinguished him. When Jesus approached the disciples’ boat, walking on the water, it was Peter who got out of the boat and walked across the water toward him (Matt. 14:28-31). It was Peter who made the first public declaration of the Lords’ true identity as the Messiah of Israel (Matt. 16:13-16). When they were surrounded by a large contingent of armed temple guards on the night of the Lord’s arrest, it was Peter who drew a sword and cut off Malchus’ ear (John 18:10). He was ready to take on the whole bunch.

That’s why it was such a shock to everyone when a powerless servant girl scared Peter into denying the Lord three times later that night. It was so out of character for him. Jesus had anticipated this, predicting that Peter would do just that after hearing him boast that even if everyone else deserted the Lord, he would not (Matt. 26:33-34).

Reverting to Peter’s original name, the Lord had said, “Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” (Luke 22:31-32)


What an amazing thing to say! First of all, notice that Satan had to ask permission before he could touch the disciples (the Greek word for “you” in the first sentence is plural) and then see that Jesus was already interceding for Peter. Not that he would be spared his ordeal, but that his faith would be strong enough to sustain him through it. Finally Jesus told Peter to strengthen his brothers after his ordeal was over, showing that the Lord’s prayers on Peter’s behalf had already been answered.

None of what Peter was going to do would catch Jesus by surprise, and from His perspective, none of it would cause the slightest change in their relationship. But Peter’s failure would humble him, give him more compassion and make him a better leader. And the other disciples would be comforted in that the failure of their courageous leader would somehow make their own failures easier to bear.

Paul would later write, “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.” (2 Cor. 1:3-4)


Someone has paraphrased these verses saying, “Our life is a ministry and our sorrows are our credentials.” Peter’s sorrows would make him a more effective minister to his flock. And the Holy Spirit would use Peter’s new-found compassion to demonstrate just how dramatic a change can be wrought in the life of a willing believer. His sermons in Acts 2:14-39 and Acts 3:11-26 must have astounded and amazed those listeners who had known him for any length of time.

Do You Still Love Me?
Perhaps the best way to understand the extent of the Lord’s faithfulness to Peter is to listen in on his so-called reinstatement. We’ll need to insert the Greek words for love to get the full impact.

When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you truly love me more than these?” The word He used for love here is “agapeo”, which in the Greek language is the highest and purest form of love.

“Yes, Lord,” he said, “You know that I love you.” But Peter used the word “phileo” which denotes a brotherly love or affection, a much less intense form of love.

Jesus said, “Feed my lambs.”
Again Jesus said, “Simon son of John, do you truly love me?” (agapeo)
He answered, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.” (phileo)
Jesus said, “Take care of my sheep.”


The third time he said to him, “Simon son of John, do you love me?” (phileo)
Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, “Do you love me?” He said, “Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.” (phileo)
Jesus said, “Feed my sheep. (John 21:15-17)


By backing down to Peter’s all too human level of love, Jesus completed the reinstatement, in effect saying, “I know you’re giving me all the love you can and it’s enough.”

And so it is with us. None of what we’ll ever do can catch Jesus by surprise,  and from His perspective, none of it can cause the slightest change in our relationship with Him. He knew every one of our sins before He went to the cross, and gave His life so we could be cleansed of all of them. We can’t surprise Him, we can’t disappoint Him, and we can’t let Him down. If He chooses to deliver us from a situation, He can. If not, He’s at the right hand of the Father interceding for us, praying us through it just like He was with Peter (Romans 8:34).  And like he did with Peter, He’ll use the situation to make us a better model of what His love can accomplish in the life of a willing believer. Selah 06-11-05
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Re: Jesus & Peter ~ A Messsage for Us

Post by Tryphosa on Sat May 17 2014, 08:49

Thanks JH!
It is a good lesson!
And a good quote too!
---

Someone has paraphrased these verses saying, “Our life is a ministry and our sorrows are our credentials.”
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Re: Jesus & Peter ~ A Messsage for Us

Post by Tryphena on Mon May 26 2014, 13:25

From article...
Not that he would be spared his ordeal, but that his faith would be strong enough to sustain him through it. 


Sound wisdom to remember for us all when we go through our own personal trials, troubles and sorrows
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Sifting Peter

Post by Tryphena on Mon Jun 02 2014, 13:17

I happened upon another Peter study done by Jack Kelley over on GracethruFaith, this one back in 2008. It is similar but as with all JK's teaching, it is post worthy...

Sifting Peter
 Saturday, March 15th, 2008

“Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” (Luke 22:31-32)

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley
“Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” (Luke 22:31-32)


In the Lord’s first sentence the word translated “you” is plural, but He changed to the singular in the second and third. This means that all the disciples would be sifted when the Lord was arrested, in fulfillment of Zechariah 13:7“Strike the shepherd and the sheep will be scattered.” But He was choosing Peter to keep the group together and focused after He was gone.


From watching him throughout the 3 1/2 years he spent with the Lord, we can tell that Peter was a fearless, decisive guy, used to taking charge and making things happen. These are qualities we admire in a man and are necessary for success as an independent businessman such as Peter. Some have even described him as head strong, and a bit of a loose cannon. Luke’s account of Peter’s calling shows him to be a man given to strong and immediate reactions. After Jesus borrowed Peter’s boat to use as a speaker’s platform, He had Peter go out and let down his nets for a catch.
Complaining that they hadn’t caught anything all the previous night, Peter said he would do it, but only because Jesus told him to. Of course, they came up with a net full. Peter’s immediate reaction was to say, “Go away from me Lord, I am a sinful man.” This after hearing one teaching. (Luke 5:1-8)


When Jesus came to the disciples walking on the water, Peter was the one who got out of the boat to try it too, and almost drowned. (Matt. 14:25-31) Peter was the first to declare that Jesus was the son of God. (Matt. 16:16) When Jesus said they were going to Jerusalem where He would be arrested and put to death, Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. “Never, Lord!” he said. “This shall never happen to you!”
Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men.”


Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. (Matt. 16:22-24)
At the Last Supper, when Jesus tried to wash Peter’s feet, he at first refused to allow it, then asked for a complete bath. With Peter it was all or nothing. (John 13:6-9)


And finally, in the Garden later that evening, he drew a sword and stepped between Jesus and the armed soldiers who had come to arrest Him. Swinging his sword at them, he cut off the ear of the High Priest’s servant, Malchus. He was clearly ready to take them all on in defense of the Lord. (John 18:10)


But the Lord rebuked him and with the touch of His hand, healed the servants’ ear. (Luke 22:51) Then He said, “Do you think I cannot call on My Father and He will at once put at my disposal more than 12 legions of angels? But how then would the Scriptures be fulfilled that say it must happen this way? (Matt. 26:53-54Shall I not drink the cup the Father has given me? (John 18:11)


When you read all the accounts of the Lord’s arrest, you get a glimpse of both His power and His resolve. John records that simply by identifying Himself, He put all the soldiers on their backs, (John 18:4-6) and from Matthew we learn that at His command the angelic host would rush to his defense.


A Roman legion consisted of 6,000 soldiers, and while it was a formidable force, it was merely a human one. Imagine what 72,000 angelic warriors could do. He could have easily subdued the arresting party and thrown the Romans out of His land in the bargain, but that’s not what He came to do. When I consider the power available to Him and yet the meekness with which He submitted to those comparatively puny leaders I’m driven to my knees in awe and gratitude.


As Paul would later write, here was One who was in His very nature God. And yet He made Himself nothing, adopting instead the nature of a humble, obedient servant. As such, He agreed to be executed in the manner reserved for the basest of criminals. (Phil 2:6-8) And Peter would add, it was not for any crime He had committed, but to pay the penalty for ours. (1 Peter 1:18-19 & 3:18)


But something had to be done about Peter. So accustomed was he to coming to the rescue that he couldn’t imagine just standing by, doing nothing, while the Lord surrendered His perfect life. And it’s my guess that even the Lord’s prediction of his denial served to strengthen Peter’s resolve that as long as he could prevent it, the Lord would not fall into any danger. Earlier the Lord had rebuked him for not seeing the big picture, not having in mind the things of God but the things of man, but it hadn’t been enough. The Lord’s second rebuke, in the garden, had backed Peter down temporarily, but more had to be done.


It wasn’t as if Peter could thwart the will of God, but he could make accomplishing it a lot messier, perhaps even wasting his own life in the process. The Lord had more in store for Peter that required keeping him alive, but his self determining ways would not be helpful with that either. Peter had to be brought to the end of himself, in order to be useful to God. He had to be made weak in order for the Lord to show Himself strong, and so Satan got permission to “sift him as wheat”, just as he had earlier received permission to afflict Job in order to accomplish God’s will. Like it is with wheat, the sifting of a man is designed to remove his impurities, and that’s what the Lord wanted for Peter. Satan was simply His agent for change.


Peter’s sifting came in the form of his public denial of the Lord. I can’t begin to imagine how humiliating it must have been for him when he heard that rooster crow, and remembered the Lord’s earlier prophecy of his denial. He’d always been so brave, so dauntless, but suddenly even the accusation of a servant girl, the least powerful of all people, had intimidated him into denial, and just at the moment of what he perceived to be the Lord’s greatest need. I can even see him blaming himself for the Lord’s death, much as you and I have done when we finally came to the gut level realization that it was our sin that put Him on the cross, not just humanity’s, but ours.


Peter had always been the one the others looked to for strength, but when it really counted he’d been weak, even cowardly. For the rest of his life and through out the entire Church Age when people thought of Peter, they’d remember that moment. It would define his life.


But Romans 8:28 does apply to all the situations in our lives. God is working everything together for the good of those who love Him. For at that moment Peter was born again, made new in the attitude of his mind. The fact becomes achingly clear in the passage we call Peter’s reinstatement. It’s found in John 21:15-19. You really have to consult your Greek lexicon to understand it because the English translations miss the point entirely. Here’s the conversation.


When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you truly love me more than these?”

“Yes, Lord,” he said, “you know that I love you.”

Jesus said, “Feed my lambs.”
Again Jesus said, “Simon son of John, do you truly love me?”

He answered, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.”

Jesus said, “Take care of my sheep.”
The third time he said to him, “Simon son of John, do you love me?”

Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, “Do you love me?” He said, “Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.”

Jesus said, “Feed my sheep. I tell you the truth, when you were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go.” Jesus said this to indicate the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God. Then he said to him, “Follow me!”
The key to understanding is in the word “love”. In the Greek John used a different word in the Lord’s questions than he did in Peters’ responses. In his first two questions, the Lord’s word for love is agapeo, which describes an all encompassing love that puts the needs and well being of the object of one’s love above everything, including one’s own needs, and does so irrespective of the object’s response. It’s the love he has for us, demonstrated on the cross.


But in response, Peter used a different word, phileo, which means the affection one brother would have for another. Finally, in His third question, the Lord substituted Peter’s word for his and they were able to agree. Both knew that Peter’s new understanding of himself would not permit him to brashly proclaim the extreme love that Jesus had asked for, and the Lord agreed that the level of love Peter could offer was sufficient. Peter’s re-birth was successful and he could now be restored to his leadership role.
From that point on the change in Peter is remarkable. His sermons in Acts 2 & 3could never have been possible had he not become submissive to the leading of the Holy Spirit within him, and throughout the Book of Acts it’s obvious that he was a changed man. And perhaps most important of all is the example his life provides for those of us who have experienced similar humbling and even humiliating failures on our way to becoming useful to the Lord.


Many great men have undergone trials designed to mold them for service to the Lord. Abraham was asked to send Ishmael away, and then to sacrifice Isaac. Moses endured 40 years in the desert while the reputation he had built in Pharaoh’s court as a Prince of Egypt was forgotten. After defeating the 400 prophets of Baal in one of the Bible’s greatest public displays of faith, Elijah was chased into the desert by the Phoenician woman Jezebel. Paul suffered through and was healed from regular beatings.


But as dramatic as their stories are, it’s Peter who showed us that the very personality traits most admired by the world can be a great handicap when we undertake the Lord’s work, and often our only hope in becoming effective is to be divested of them. It’s a painful experience. Some are defeated by it and leave the ministry, but those who survive learn that the Lord’s response to Paul’s complaint is true true for all of us. “My strength is made perfect in your weakness.” (2 Cor. 12:9) Selah 03-15-08


http://gracethrufaith.com/topical-studies/spiritual-life/sifting-peter/
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Re: Jesus & Peter ~ A Messsage for Us

Post by Jarhead on Mon Jun 02 2014, 13:20

Thanks for posting, Tryph!
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