JOHN 18:1-18; 25-27
This part of the narrative is hard to read: Judas brings a detachment of soldiers to arrest Jesus and notice how Peter responds. He is willing to die for his Lord! He attacks the High Priest’s slave and is ready to confront the professional contingent of Roman soldiers to protect his Master. But when Jesus stops the armed battle and defuses the moment, we see just how hard it can be to fulfill our deepest intentions. Peter is courageous, and he is loyal, as long as Jesus, too, is willing to fight his fate. But when it becomes evident that Jesus is allowing his own arrest and going passively to his unjust death, all Peter’s faith and courage dissipates. Life is not turning out as he imagined. Now, admitting his friendship with his Master means associating not with a royal Messiah, but a suffering servant and sacrificial lamb. It proves harder to be related to and connected with a condemned man than it was to follow a great public figure. Peter denies Jesus with increasing vehemence and not before the threatening Pilate, but rather a female gatekeeper and some powerless servants. He has failed, completely, to make good his promises and meet his own expectations. He, like Judas, has become a betrayer—and just when his Lord has faced his hardest hurdle.
When have you failed to meet your own expectations?
When have you broken a promise?