March 18: What Peter Did Not Do

Read Luke 23:31-34, 54-62

I know what it’s like to fall back on my word, leave promises unfulfilled. The best of my intentions have ended in emptiness more times than I’d like to admit. Like Peter, I have pledged to dig in and do what my heart knows to be true, “Lord, I’m ready to go with You both to prison and to death!” (v. 33). Like Peter, I have let fear chase that vow away and leave me with good I did not do, bully me into denying what I know to be true.

Peter said he was ready to journey into the tomb with the One he knew to be Lord and Savior. Still, he did not do it. When the time came to step up and stand up for Jesus, Peter failed. He denied even knowing Him. Three times he denied Him.

Jesus’ journey to the empty tomb travelled through lonely abandonment, the kind of emotional pain we can only imagine. First Judas sold their friendship for the price of a dead slave. Then His best friends fell asleep, clueless, while He agonized and prayed so hard blood seeped out of His pores. And now, when the time finally came to walk into the suffering, Peter straight up denied even knowing the man. The man called Jesus whose journey would soon lead to a tomb and leave it empty.

Peter, even after his empty promise, would three days later sand before Jesus’ empty tomb.

The same is true of all that you and I have not done, all the promises we’ve left empty and the vows we’ve neglected. Jesus’ murderers would lead Him out of that courtyard and up a hill to die on a cross forsaken and alone because of Peter’s and Judas’ and yours and my empty words and forgotten promises and less-than holy ways which deserve death in its meanest form.

Even though Peter did not do what he’d said he would do, even though he fell short, Jesus journeyed through the pain so that he and you and I could journey to the empty tomb.

Oh, what love Jesus the Savior has shown!

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