Fri, April 20, 2018
Matthew 16:23—Jesus turned to Peter and said, “Get away from me, Satan! You are a dangerous trap to me. You are seeing things merely from a human point of view, not from God’s.
Peter’s defects surfaced under pressure of circumstances as he dared to rebuke the Lord. He had not really grasped the implications of Christ’s teachings and he blurted out a well-meaning sentiment that was actually rooted in ignorance and unbelief. But worse, Peter was the unknowing vehicle of Satan’s influence to dissuade Christ from going to the cross. “Satan is constantly at work trying to influence God’s people to avoid the cross by avoiding self-denial through tempting us to self-indulgence and appealing to self-preservation to avoid self-sacrifice as unrelated to true discipleship.” How is the Lord grooming you? What is your most recent experience with self-denial for no other reason than the Lord said “no”? The Holy Spirit grooms us for bigger things that require deeper levels of self-sacrifice. The higher we go in spiritual influence, the lower we must go in humility and obedience.
Sat, April 21, 2018
Matthew 26:33 – Peter declared, “Even if everyone else deserts you, I will never desert you.”
Overconfident Peter—“his weaknesses had not yet been measured, his liabilities not yet calibrated, and his strength had not yet been tested.” His training required some important lessons that would bring him face to face with the real condition of his heart. Before he could become a “rock” upon which Christ build the church, Peter would face his deficiencies. We all have learning curves, so let’s be kind to one another in the process. God measures all hearts.