Over the last week in my personal study I have been looking at the life of Jesus’ disciple Peter. As I read, I began to realize something quite interesting, there seems to be a particular pattern in Peter’s life.
If you were to do a quick survey of Peter’s life, and the ‘main events’ that shaped his character you can see what I am talking about.
1. Peter (Simon) was fishing and catching nothing, Jesus comes along tells him to cast their nets again, and they catch a huge load of fish (Luke 5:1-11).
2. Jesus calls Peter to follow him (Matthew 4:18-20),
This turns into a three year intimate teacher disciple relationship, during this time Peter emerges as somewhat of a leader among the disciples. Peter even confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, which at this point Jesus states that He will build his church upon such confessions.
3. Peter turns his back on Jesus, and denies ever knowing him, 3 times! (Matthew 26:69-75).
Jesus is crucified and dies. After three days, risen from the dead. (Imagine Peter’s inner struggle personally knowing that he turned his back on Jesus, with the knowledge that he will very well face him again).
4. Peter was found fishing again and catching nothing, Jesus comes along tells him to cast their nets again, and they catch a huge load of fish (John 21:1-6).
5. Jesus seeks reconciliation with Peter, and asks Peter to express his devotion to him 3 times! (John 21:15-17)
6. Jesus calls Peter to follow him (John 21:19),
This relationship continues as life long intimate relationship, and again Peter emerges as a leader among the early church. Peter preaches that Jesus is the Son of God (Acts 2:14-41, Acts 10:34-48), upon this message God begins to expand his kingdom as people confess this truth.
Think about it, Peter was a man like you and I. He was not perfect, he had his doubts, his weaknesses, and I am sure he was often reminded of that. But this is how God works, he uses men like Peter and shows them mercy and grace.
Peter was always quick to give all the glory to God. I wonder if his life expereinces, the development of his character, the pattern of his life reminded him that God was always at work in his life. This is the mark of a saint, when Peter fell-he got back up. Even when he doubted, he was obedient, even if it took 3 times to convince him (Acts 10:9-16).