HOW DID WE WALK IN LOVE AS CHRIST LOVED US THIS WEEK?

WHAT DID GOD SAY IN HIS WORD?

15 Simon Peter followed Jesus, and so did another disciple. Since that disciple was known to the high priest, he entered with Jesus into the courtyard of the high priest, 16 but Peter stood outside at the door. So the other disciple, who was known to the high priest, went out and spoke to the servant girl who kept watch at the door, and brought Peter in. 17 The servant girl at the door said to Peter, “You also are not one of this man’s disciples, are you?” He said, “I am not.” 18 Now the servants and officers had made a charcoal fire, because it was cold, and they were standing and warming themselves. Peter also was with them, standing and warming himself. 19 The high priest then questioned Jesus about his disciples and his teaching. 20 Jesus answered him, “I have spoken openly to the world. I have always taught in synagogues and in the temple, where all Jews come together. I have said nothing in secret. 21 Why do you ask me? Ask those who have heard me what I said to them; they know what I said.” 22 When he had said these things, one of the officers standing by struck Jesus with his hand, saying, “Is that how you answer the high priest?” 23 Jesus answered him, “If what I said is wrong, bear witness about the wrong; but if what I said is right, why do you strike me?” 24 Annas then sent him bound to Caiaphas the high priest.

25 Now Simon Peter was standing and warming himself. So they said to him, “You also are not one of his disciples, are you?” He denied it and said, “I am not.” 26 One of the servants of the high priest, a relative of the man whose ear Peter had cut off, asked, “Did I not see you in the garden with him?” 27 Peter again denied it, and at once a rooster crowed.

Jesus came and took the bread and gave it to them, and so with the fish. 14 This was now the third time that Jesus was revealed to the disciples after he was raised from the dead. 15 When they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Feed my lambs.” 16 He said to him a second time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Tend my sheep.” 17 He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Peter was grieved because he said to him the third time, “Do you love me?” and he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep.

Recall from Sunday:

As we move from denying Jesus to trusting his promises (18:15-24), we learn to shepherd people as Jesus’s disciples (18:25-27; 21:13-17).

Reflect:

Have you ever avoided or shrunk back from talking about God with someone? What was that like? Why did you hold back?

WHAT DID GOD SAY TO ME THROUGH HIS WORD?

Peter denied his connection to Jesus three times at the high priest’s house, even though he had just been ready to die in battle for Jesus (18:10-27). Why do you think he did that? In what ways do you struggle to let yourself be easily identifiable as Jesus’s disciple?

Jesus told the high priest that he could ask any of his followers about his life and teachings (18:19-21), which still remains Jesus’s strategy for spreading the good news (Acts 1:8). How will your friends come to know Jesus if not through you? In what ways are you the “fragrance of Christ” in their life (2 Cor 2:14)?

Peter’s failures break him, but Jesus restores Peter and strengthens him to follow once again (John 21:13-17). Are you carrying guilt or shame from your failures to follow Jesus? Based on Peter’s story what do you think Jesus would say to you about those things?

WHAT DOES GOD WANT ME TO DO ABOUT IT?

Peter’s transformation happens at a meal with Jesus. If we’re not regularly meeting with Jesus, we won’t have the fragrance of Christ around us as we spend time with other people. Challenge each other as a group this week to connect regularly with the Lord.

Our courage and comfort in openly associating with Jesus or talking about spiritual things can be greatly strengthened through preparation and expectation. This can be as easy as making a point to ask God daily for opportunities to point people to Jesus and asking him for the courage to step into those opportunities. Repetition in asking God and looking for these opportunities will help ingrain the expectation and make the execution more natural.