When Denial Becomes Death
25 Meanwhile, Simon Peter was still standing there warming himself. So they asked him, “You aren’t one of his disciples too, are you?” He denied it, saying, “I am not.” 26 One of the high priest’s servants, a relative of the man whose ear Peter had cut off, challenged him, “Didn’t I see you with him in the garden?” 27 Again Peter denied it, and at that moment a rooster began to crow.
Commotion stirs once Jesus is arrested and captured by the Roman soldiers. Peter is very present during somewhat of an altercation as he slices of the ear of a soldier with his sword. After Jesus is taken away, Peter is now the talk of the town. A little girl notices him in the courtyard and questions his affiliation with Jesus which Peter blatantly denies. He is again questioned while standing in the cold about his relationship with Jesus which Peter is again quick to deny. Then another man who was present at the scene in the garden where Peter chops off a soldiers ear takes notice of him and questions his identity. For the third time, Peter denies any relationship to Jesus as a rooster crows in the back.. in Luke 22, it states that Peter immediately encounters the Lord who calls him out. Though Peter could deny the observations of the people, he could not deny the truth standing before God which brings immediate deep conviction as he weeps as a result of his wrongdoing. As Peter came to grips with what he found most fearful and dreadful, his confession whether he knew it or not, was the launchpad of one the of greatest ministries in the Bible!
When we cannot handle the truth, it’s easy for us to respond with denial out of fear, shame, or guilt that creates a false sense of security. Any form of denial will eventually become death. I recall when I was 5 years old, I would always take a $20 from my mom’s purse and bike around the block to the local pharmacy where I would buy a bag full of candy. My mom would question me at times if I knew of any money missing but I would simply deny it so that I could enjoy eating candy in secrecy to avoid any form of punishment. The very last time I took from her wallet, I was riding back from the pharmacy when a car came out of a drive way and hit me! I flew over the handle bars and candy was scattered all over the sidewalk. The man drove by me and asked, “Is my car ok?” and then immediately sped off. I was a bit traumatized but was blessed to walk away from the incident physically unharmed. From that point on, I never took any money from my mom’s purse as I felt it was a warning or a sign of some sort that God was watching me. Jesus is dead on when he states that “The truth will set you free.” No matter our sins, shortcomings, struggles, hardships, etc, denial to the truth brings death to our spirit which then brings death to our heart, thoughts, and actions. Embracing reality is the launchpad to healing, life, and also the ability to give others permission that it’s okay to be vulnerable to promote spiritual breakthrough and freedom.
Thank you Jesus, that in many times where I have denied You and the truth, that You loved me enough to have those things catch up with me so that I would not be blind but can now see. Thank you for reminding me that Your power found through vulnerability brings life and not death! Help use me to continue the power that comes from sharing Your truths in hopes that many can be set free from the enemy’s ways.