Your Easter weekend will hopefully be filled with food, family, and celebrating Jesus’ resurrection with other believers. And we should celebrate! Jesus is alive! And that changes everything.
But Jesus’ friends who lived through those events initially saw them very differently. Jesus had revolutionized their world and their future. They had walked away from everything to follow Him. But now He was telling them that He was about to be “given into the hands of sinners,” be crucified, and rise on the third day.
The Bible says, “The disciples did not understand any of this. Its meaning was hidden from them, and they did not know what he was talking about.” (Luke 18:33) We look back and see how Jesus had stated clearly that His death would not be the end, but in the moment the disciples couldn’t see it. Jesus’ warnings seemed strange to them, and when He was arrested “they all forsook Him and fled.” (Mark 14:50)
Follow Peter that night. Things weren’t looking good for Jesus. Peter couldn’t tear himself away from the spectacle, but it was beginning to look like Jesus would be condemned to death. From Peter’s perspective, everything he had given up his whole life for was about to be demolished. His leader was about to be killed, and it appeared he could be next.
And so when confronted, Peter denied Jesus with cursing.
Could, should, the disciples have understood more? Should they have stuck with Jesus instead of running away? Did Peter have other options besides denying Jesus? Of course!