Sunday, October 12, 2014

Jesus (and Peter) on Trial (Mark 14:53-72)

There is an interesting parallel between the accounts of Jesus’ trial before the High Priest. Peter’s three denials are well known. However there is also a pattern of three in Jesus’ case.

In verses 55 and 56, the priests bring false witnesses against Him, but their stories don’t match. Then again in 57-59, more false witnesses are presented and again their testimonies don’t add up. In both cases, Jesus does nothing to protest their accusations. Finally, the High Priest asks Jesus directly if He is the Messiah. Jesus gives testimony against Himself and tells the truth.

Peter faces a similar ordeal. Verses 66-68 show the first “testimony” against him. Someone had seen him with Jesus. Peter lies and denies the charge. Again in 69, he denies accurate testimony about his connection to Jesus. Finally, a bystander asks him if he is a disciple, after all he is a Galilean. Peter vehemently denies the charge and lies.

Jesus trusted God’s plan. He didn’t worry about the stories people made up about Him. He didn’t shy away from giving faithful and true testimony. He let the truth have its affect. Peter is more like us. Peter's life did speak volumes. People knew he was a friend of Jesus. But when questioned about his relationship, he let fear dictate his response.

The problem with letting fear guide us is that it may cause us to miss out on God’s plan. Of course, God’s plan comes with adventure and meaning, but also risk.

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