TEXT: John 21:15-17; 1 Peter 1:3-9
Simon Peter had left his fishing nets by the Sea of Galilee to follow Jesus. He had witnessed the feeding of the five thousand, the raising of Jairus' daughter, and had walked to Jesus on the water. He had been taught love, forgiveness, resolve, allegiance, faith, and obedience, by the Messiah himself. In this lesson, we contrast Peter's failure to stand up for his Lord, with the triumph over Satan he experienced after Pentecost when three thousand souls were converted to Christ. Our objective is to find the reasons for his failure and subsequent successes, and apply those lessons to achieve greater effectiveness in our service to the Lord.
- Reading the first portion of our text in Matthew, what can we see in Peter's expressed determination to follow Christ?
- In spite of Peter's earlier stand, when the testing time came, he failed his Lord. On the three occasions when he was accused of being a follower of Jesus of Nazareth, how did Peter's behavior become increasingly vehement and reproachful?
- Looking at Matthew 26:40-41, note one reason why Peter's resolve to stand by his Lord failed.
- Is it possible to discover our weakness in time to avert failure?
- Why was the cock's crowing of concern to Peter? How did Peter react and what does this signify?
- Compare Matthew 26:75 with John 21:15-17. What connection does one have with the other?
- In the Acts portion of our text, we see a completely different Peter from the man who denied his Lord. What enabled him to boldly preach Jesus Christ to this multitude of people when he had previously failed Christ so miserably? See Acts 1:8.
- The Bible tells us of both the strengths and weaknesses of many of God's men through the ages. Can you cite a reason why God chose to include their weaknesses and failures? See 2 Timothy 3:16 and 2 Peter 3:17-18.
- If one is not completely satisfied with some aspect of his spiritual life, note here what actions can be taken in order to improve.