November 8-9, 2008
The Breaking of Peter
Peter’s pride in his own cleverness and strength got in the way of God’s purposes. Christ sought a servant-leader to guide believers after He returned to heaven. The former fisherman was an impulsive know-it-all, but the Lord saw through Peter’s arrogance to his potential. And so the master Craftsman used a sharp tool—humiliation—to break him.
When Jesus’ words conflicted with Peter’s opinions, the disciple boldly rebuked the Teacher (Matt. 16:21-22; John 13:5-8). Christ responded with a pointed reprimand meant both to silence and to teach (Matt. 16:23). In fact, the Lord had to correct the disciple in front of his peers on several occasions.
Ultimately, Peter failed in an area where he’d once felt great confidence—his commitment to die for the Lord. Instead, he denied Christ three times before the rooster crowed. This final humiliation, witnessed by a group of strangers, shattered his self-assurance.
Jesus chipped away at Peter’s pride for three years before the disciple gave up his notion that Christ was Israel’s grand deliverer from Roman oppression. Achieving glory ceased to matter when he chose to focus on the Lord’s plan for lasting personal salvation. And thanks to Peter’s newfound humility, God had a servant-leader (1 Peter 5:5-6).
How are you hindering God’s work in your life? Be aware that He is determined to break you for your good and His glory. The Lord restored Peter as a more humble yet much greater man than before. He does the same for every believer who yields to His will.
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