Mark 14:38 – When Jesus says to Peter “The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”, I think it had to be a great encouragement to him. It’s like Jesus saying “I know that you’re with me, but your tired and weak. Come on! Pray and hang in with me.”
Mark 14:41-42 – I wonder if they felt that they had somehow let Jesus down, contributing to the failure to keep the authorities at bay. Maybe it’s my modern day American interpretation of Prayer, but I can imagine thinking that Jesus was here to petition the father to prevent His arrest. If so, I might feel as though my lack of engagement or faith let Jesus down.
Mark 14:43 – I can imagine thinking “Oh no …”, but then seeing Judas and maybe briefly thinking “Oh, it’s Judas, that’s OK” before realizing that it’s not at all OK.
Mark 14:53-65 – I like how they brought all these witnesses in to convict Jesus, but it didn’t work, their testimony was contradictory. And Jesus refused to respond to their charges. It wasn’t until he answered a direct question that they had a basis to charge him. Jesus literally gave them what they needed so they could execute Him.
Mark 14:72 – I feel for Peter here. The vehement insistence that he’d ever deny Jesus rebutted by Jesus’ assurance that he would, and here he is. Doing exactly what Jesus predicted. It must have torn at his heart. Many a good man has been destroyed by an event like this, confronted with who he really is rather than who he’d like to believe he is.
Jesus had remarkable faith in Peter, if you think about it. Assuming that Jesus knew at least a bit of the future, which is clear from his words and predictions of things like Peter’s denial, Jesus could have done a lot to prevent Peter from facing this. He could have done more to prepare him. Sent him on a long distance errand. Instructed him to stay away from the courtyard. But He didn’t. He chose to let Peter face his sin. He chose to let Peter suffer the inner turmoil that comes with seeing one’s self clearly.
I would guess that most people don’t want to know who they really are, They spend their lives trying to pretend that they are something else. I’m reminded of the movie the Matrix, where the one guy decides that reality is too much. He longs to get plugged back in, pull the veil back over my eyes, lie to me again. The truth is to painful and hard.
Jesus refused to shelter Peter from the truth. I wonder how much he knew about Peter would handle it. Certainly, the Peter of Acts who preached and stood unflinchingly in the face of the threats of the leaders would have never been if he hadn’t been in that courtyard and heard that rooster.
And where would we be in that case?

One thought on “Mark 14:32-72

  1. Such a riveting thought.. I think that we ego-driven guys have all had those moments when our strength fails and we hear that cock-a-doddle-doo in the distance.
    I love it that Peter was a different man after this. I also love it that Jesus called him on it and made him say I love you 3 times. It seems that humility is born in these types of situations.

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