When the Authorities Arrest Your Friends 050212
In thinking through this, it seems quite reasonable. What happens when the police or the authorities suddenly come upon you and seize one of your group, and drag them off to execution? Peter and the other disciples did what you or I would do—they scattered and ran. They ran maybe not so much from fear, or to even escape a similar fate, but because the event of the police or other authorities suddenly crashing into their midst put them all into shock. The Roman soldiers who came to arrest Jesus were known worldwide for their military skill and viciousness. In this shock, the disciples reacted and scattered as a reaction and not as a well reasoned decision.
Peter’s denial of desertion is also much like us. If we love Jesus, we want to follow him unto death. But we are still common, ordinary humans and not Roman soldiers. We are fearful, we are not accustomed to violence or violent people. Like the disciples, we should flee, but remember, we need to meet Jesus in Galilee!
Pray for peace,
Peace Mennonite Church keeps a prayer list for those in need. If you need prayer, or want to e-mail our pastor, e-mail billd @ peacemennonitechurch.net (Take out the extra spaces to use this e-mail—the spaces confuse spam generators).
Pray with us!
We are praying as a church, and attempting to follow the centuries’ old tradition of praying with other Christians three times a day. We are following the prayer liturgy at www.commonprayer.net
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A Call to Worship and Obedience
1 O come, let us sing to the Lord;
let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!
2 Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving;
let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!
3 For the Lord is a great God,
and a great King above all gods.
4 In his hand are the depths of the earth;
the heights of the mountains are his also.
5 The sea is his, for he made it,
and the dry land, which his hands have formed.
6 O come, let us worship and bow down,
let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!
7 For he is our God,
and we are the people of his pasture,
and the sheep of his hand.
O that today you would listen to his voice!
8 Do not harden your hearts, as at Meribah,
as on the day at Massah in the wilderness,
9 when your ancestors tested me,
and put me to the proof, though they had seen my work.
10 For forty years I loathed that generation
and said, ‘They are a people whose hearts go astray,
and they do not regard my ways.’
11 Therefore in my anger I swore,
‘They shall not enter my rest.’
Penitence and Trust in God
8 Do not rejoice over me, O my enemy;
when I fall, I shall rise;
when I sit in darkness,
the Lord will be a light to me.
9 I must bear the indignation of the Lord,
because I have sinned against him,
until he takes my side
and executes judgement for me.
He will bring me out to the light;
I shall see his vindication.
10 Then my enemy will see,
and shame will cover her who said to me,
‘Where is the Lord your God?’
My eyes will see her downfall;
now she will be trodden down
like the mire of the streets.
A Prophecy of Restoration
11 A day for the building of your walls!
In that day the boundary shall be far extended.
12 In that day they will come to you
from Assyria to Egypt,
and from Egypt to the River,
from sea to sea and from mountain to mountain.
13 But the earth will be desolate
because of its inhabitants,
for the fruit of their doings.
14 Shepherd your people with your staff,
the flock that belongs to you,
which lives alone in a forest
in the midst of a garden land;
let them feed in Bashan and Gilead
as in the days of old.
15 As in the days when you came out of the land of Egypt,
show us marvellous things.
16 The nations shall see and be ashamed
of all their might;
they shall lay their hands on their mouths;
their ears shall be deaf;
17 they shall lick dust like a snake,
like the crawling things of the earth;
they shall come trembling out of their fortresses;
they shall turn in dread to the Lord our God,
and they shall stand in fear of you.
God’s Compassion and Steadfast Love
18 Who is a God like you, pardoning iniquity
and passing over the transgression
of the remnant of your possession?
He does not retain his anger for ever,
because he delights in showing clemency.
19 He will again have compassion upon us;
he will tread our iniquities under foot.
You will cast all our sins
into the depths of the sea.
20 You will show faithfulness to Jacob
and unswerving loyalty to Abraham,
as you have sworn to our ancestors
from the days of old.
Peter’s Denial Foretold
26 When they had sung the hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives. 27And Jesus said to them, ‘You will all become deserters; for it is written,
“I will strike the shepherd,
and the sheep will be scattered.”
28But after I am raised up, I will go before you to Galilee.’ 29Peter said to him, ‘Even though all become deserters, I will not.’ 30Jesus said to him, ‘Truly I tell you, this day, this very night, before the cock crows twice, you will deny me three times.’ 31But he said vehemently, ‘Even though I must die with you, I will not deny you.’ And all of them said the same.
The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
Related articles are presented without endorsement
- The Desire to Fulfill the Mission (thisdaywithgod.wordpress.com)
- The hurt of Peter’s denial of Christ-‘Just as I am’, Brian Doerkson (rodiagnusdei.wordpress.com)
- City and Rural Churches Work Together to Help People who are Hungry (agridigest.wordpress.com)
- Before the Rooster Crows: Do we give Peter a bad rap? (ptl2010.com)